olusegun Ariyo

Nigerians across the board have raiased concerns about the outburst of Zamfara state governor, Bello Matawalle on his stand on self-defense against bandits and terrorists that have been terrorizing the Zamfara people.

The Governor, who remarked that it was time for the People of Zamfara state to start thinking of defending their selves using firearms did not state specifically what modalities should they be doing it, hence the ban on firearms still persist  

Explaining further in a statement, the Zamfara State Commissioner for Information, Ibrahim Dosara, had in a statement on Sunday, disclosed that the government had directed residents of the state to prepare and obtain local guns to defend themselves against bandits who have been terrorizing the state.

The government, therefore, directed the state Commissioner of Police to issue licenses to all those who qualify and are willing to obtain guns to defend themselves.

He said, “Government has, henceforth, directed individuals to prepare and obtain guns to defend themselves against the bandits, as the government has directed the state commissioner of police to issue a license to all those who qualify and are wishing to obtain such guns to defend themselves.

“Government is ready to facilitate people, especially our farmers, to secure basic weapons for defending themselves. The government has already concluded an arrangement to distribute 500 forms to each of the 19 emirates in the state for those willing to obtain guns to defend themselves.

“People must apply to the Commissioner of Police to own guns and such other basic weapons to be used in defending themselves. A secretariat or centre will be established for the collection of intelligence on the activities of informants.”

But reacting to the directive, Barr Wale Oreyomi told Urban Express-News Online that the there was no law that gives outright liberty for  any individual to carry firearms as such law that existed before requires  processes and that which has been altered to allow the Nigeria police to determine who should carry it coming with  all needed requirements

The Zamfara state commissioner of police Ayuba Elkhana said he has yet to receive any directive to issue gun licenses to the people; adding that the embargo on firearms licenses is still in force, noting that the police have stopped issuing licenses to citizens who wished to own guns.

The police boss stated this, on Sunday to our correspondent, in response to inquiries regarding the directive by the state government that the police command should issue gun licenses to those eligible to bear arms.

“I am yet to receive any directive. Let me see the directive first before I can comment. I have not seen the directive, so I cannot comment on compliance.”

Asked if the government’s decision was a vote of no confidence in the police, the CP replied, “There is nothing like a vote of no confidence, please. This is a farming season and you cannot get police force or any security to be following everybody to the farm. They are attacking people on the farm; that is the problem. It is not as if we are not doing our best; we are doing our best. Of recent, we rescued many people (from bandits).”

The police boss stated this, on Sunday to our correspondent, in response to inquiries regarding the directive by the state government that the police command should issue gun licenses to those eligible to bear arms.

 “I am yet to receive any directive. Let me see the directive first before I can comment. I have not seen the directive, so I cannot comment on compliance.”

Asked if the government’s decision was a vote of no confidence in the police, the CP replied, “There is nothing like a vote of no confidence, please. This is farming season and you cannot get police force or any security to be following everybody to the farm. They are attacking people on the farm; that is the problem. It is not as if we are not doing our best; we are doing our best. Of recent, we rescued many people (from bandits).”

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