Nigeria: Liberalising Gun Ownership Laws in Nigeria Won't Cause Anarchy – – Security Expert

A security expert and President of the Alumni Association of the National Institute of Security Studies, Mike Ejiofor said legalising carrying of firearms and weapons for Nigerians will not cause anarchy in the country.

Ejiofor stated this in an interview with Arise Television on Thursday.

According to him, as the security situation in the country was not up to par, the government should encourage the citizens to defend themselves.

Ejiofor said that he had mentioned in a conference some years ago that there is a need to liberalise the carrying of arms for Nigerians, and he still maintains the position to this day.

He said, “The argument that if you allow Nigerians to carry arms, it will be abused, I agree. There is tendency for abuse, but we should not also…the primary purpose of government is welfare and security of the people as provided for and enshrined in our constitution.

“But where daily, especially in Benue and Plateau, hundreds of people are killed, no account is given, I don’t think it’s proper.

“Why don’t we liberalise this issue of carrying of firearms so that if you are coming to my house, you know I’m also armed. But these people act with impunity, they act with all kinds of things because they know people are not armed. I don’t believe that it’s going to bring any anarchy.”

Reacting to the statement of the Chief of Army Staff that Nigeria will become a state of anarchy if the citizens are allowed to bear arms, Ejiofor noted that the country was already in a state of anarchy.

He said, “I don’t think so. We are already a state of anarchy. We are already there. People cannot go about their normal duties. And to travel now comes with problem. I don’t think we should go beyond that, government should encourage people to protect themselves.”

He then said that research in 2020 had disclosed that Nigeria had a record of 6.1 million illegal arms in the hands of civilians, also revealing that 3 out of every 100 Nigerians have firearms.

But, when asked why this didn’t seem to show as there were still ongoing massacres, he said, “The political elites in Nigeria are the people causing this problem, and they have these illegal arms which they use in conducting elections.

“At the end of the elections, they keep it for another election. Now, you are talking of people in rural area, Bokkos for instance. How will they have that kind of arms? And if they have such access to arms, they will not be killed in hundreds, there will be resistance.”

Ejiofor said that there are regulations in place as to people who can be certified to bear arms, adding that “The person bearing arms must be sane, must be somebody who is not mental. And we will need to subject these people to mental examination to certified that they are not hot tempered.”

He further said, “The area of sanity is always determined by medical practitioners. So, you need to look at their mental state, look at the temperament before you issue such arms. And in fact, you can see people brandishing illegal arms in public places, in functions, and openly shooting guns and nothing is being done.

“So, what is left than to legalise this carrying of arms? So, that if you come to my house, you will feel challenged because you will feel that I also have my own arms in my house,” he added.

Addressing security issues in Nigeria and how to solve them, Ejiofor said,, “We’re talking of establishment of state police.”

On the arguments made against the formation of state police saying that state police officers will be abused, he said, “Is the Nigerian Police not being abused?”