President Mohammed Buhari has approved the establishment of a National Centre for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons (NCCSALW) to be domiciled in the Office of the National Security Adviser.
The NCCSALW replaces the defunct Presidential Committee on Small Arms and Light Weapons and shall serve as the institutional mechanism for policy guidance, research and monitoring of all aspects of Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALW) in Nigeria.
This decision is part of ongoing restructuring of Nigeria’s security architecture to address emerging threats and strengthen regional mechanism for the control, prevention and regulation of SALW.
The impact of the proliferation of SALW across national borders in Africa and the Sahel region has resulted in terrorism, human trafficking, organized crime, and insurrections in West Africa and Nigeria.
Therefore, as one of the measures in tackling this threat, the new Centre will be fulfilling the requirements of the ECOWAS Moratorium on Import, Export, and Manufacture of Light Weapons as well as the UN Plan of Action to prevent, combat, and eradicate the illicit trade in SALW.
The NCCSALW will serve as the National Focal Point on SALW in Nigeria and lead a multi-stakeholder process involving Government Ministries, Departments, Agencies and the Civil Society in implementing all national, UN and ECOWAS Plans of Action on the control of SALW.
The Centre will maintain international cooperation and also operate zonal offices in the Six Geopolitical Zones to ensure quick response and effective mobilization of resources.
The pioneer National Coordinator, Rtd Major General AM Dikko has served in various capacities in and outside Nigeria. He was a Course Director at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Centre and Chief Instructor of the Nigerian Army Peacekeeping Centre.
He was also a Military Adviser, United Nation Office for West Africa, Director Peacekeeping Operations Defence Headquarters, Commander Operations LAST HOLD as well as Commander, Operation LAFIYA DOLE, to mention a few.
The pioneer Coordinator has vast experience working with the ECOWAS and the UN system and is expected to operationalize the objectives of the NCCSALW.
Afaka students: How Nigerian govt released notorious kidnapper, parents paid N32m ransom
Detail has emerged as to a how Nigerian government released a notorious kidnapper in exchange for the freedom of the last of batch of 27 students of Federal College of Forestry, Afaka, abducted on March 11.
In a prisoner swap deal brokered by former President Olusegun Obasanjo, DAILY NIGERIAN learnt, the kidnapper simply identified as Nanono was transported from a detention facility in Kano, were he was being held, and handed over to a traditional ruler in Kaduna who acted as the middleman.
Parents and relatives of the victims were then left with the payment of N15m, in addition to the N17m they earlier paid for the release of the 10 of the students earlier released in two batches.
The parents first paid N17m last month for the release of the all the victims, but the kidnappers released 10 students in two batches, insisting that amount was too small.
In view of the kidnappers’ failure to meet the obligation, the parents insisted on a middleman for the second round of negotiations.
A security source involved in the negotiation confirmed that the kidnappers demanded the release of three of their gang members in custody and payment of the N50m.
But after a series of negotiations and pleas, they accepted to reduce the amount and the only surviving gang member named Nanono,” said the source.
Just in: 27 College of Forestry Technology students released
The 27 students abducted from the Federal College of Forestry Mechanisation, Afaka, Kaduna State, have been released.
One of the persons who received the students confirmed the news to Daily Trust.
He said the release was facilitated by the Sheikh Ahmed Gumi dialogue committee with support from former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
The students were among the 37 abducted almost two months ago.
After payment of ransom by parents and school management, the bandits only released 10 of the victims.
Their abductors had initially demanded a N500 million ransom from the Kaduna State Government but Governor Nasir El-Rufai ruled out the option of negotiation, saying bandits deserve to be killed.
Breaking: Bandits Release One Abducted Kaduna Varsity Student
One of the abducted students of Greenfield University in Kaduna State has been released by the bandits.
Although the police and government authorities are yet to confirm the development, the mother of the student, Lauritta Attahiru confirmed the release of her son to Channels Television, on Tuesday.
She however refused to give details of how her son was released and whether a ransom was paid or not.
Some of the parents told Channels Television that the student was released on Saturday after his mother, who is the wife of a Retired Army officer from Plateau State negotiated and paid ransom to the bandits privately before they released her son on Saturday.
The parents had earlier informed that the bandits have been negotiating with them individually, asking each of them to pay as high as N20 million, before they eventually demanded a bulk of N100 million and ten motorcycles on Monday, May 3.
The parents however appealed to the government and Nigerians to come to their aid so that their children will be rescued alive from the hands of their abductors.
With the release of the student, the fate of the remaining 16 students still hangs in the balance even as the bandits threatened to kill them if their parents and government fail to pay the N100 million ransom and also provide ten new motorcycles.
Threat To Kill
The release of one of the students follows an earlier threat by their abductors to kill the remaining 17 students in their custody if their parents and the state government fail to pay the sum of N100 million as ransom by Tuesday, May 4th.
This was disclosed by some of the parents of the abducted students on Monday.
The parents of the victims who did not want their names mentioned due to fear told Channels Television that the fresh demand of N100 million by the bandits is in addition to the over N50 million ransom paid to them over the weekend, with the assurance to release their children.
In addition to the N100 million, the parents said the bandits also demanded ten new motorcycles before the end of Tuesday, May 4th, failure which they will have no choice but to kill the remaining 17 students in their custody.
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