The recent statement by the spokesman of Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPoB), Mr. Emma Powerful, in the controversial interview with the Channels Television a forthnight ago, that Eastern Security Network (ESN) the military wing of IPoB has more sophisticated weapons may have come as rabble rousing or propagandist assertion, and possibly be taken with a pinch of salt by the authorities. Yet, such a statement in the truest sense, cannot be taken for granted by a discernible mind.
The group may have actually over estimated its powers by making such impressionistic statement that audaciously negates whatever arsenal are possessed by the Nigerian military but it certainly does not substract from the fact that, Nigeria is a country full of illegal arms and ammunition.
It is no longer news, that arm proliferation is one major activity that has permeated every nook and cranny of the country.
Ranging from small arms and light weapons, the entire geographic space is now an open market for all manner of arms including military assault rifles which ordinarily are supposed to be found only with the military.
One would recall that in 2011 when some ship loads of highly sophisticated weapons including grenade launcher imported by unknown agents were intercepted at the Lagos seaports by security agents, there was so much apprehension in the public space as to who were the importers and why did they import such arms?
One could recall that some persons were arrested including foreigners and prosecuted, yet the argument was that more of such weapons must have found their ways into the country many times before the arrival of the shipment that was eventually intercepted.
That incident occurred at the threshold of the Boko Haram insurgency and in spite of the initial less of attention to the insurgency and fighting power of the insurgents, it suddenly became obvious that they were prepared as they were no lacking in arms and ammunition thereby creating the impression that they might be the recipient of the earliest shipments of the weapons into the country.
It is possible too, that such sophisticated weapons may have found their way into the Southeast region by the master minds of IPoB its subsequent military wing are now claiming superiority over weapons control.
Add this scenario to the ever porous land borders and the corrupt tendencies of some of our security agents at the borders, the regime of arms smuggling into the country worsens the already existing deadly scenario.
Arms proliferation has been an issue over the years but its spate of increase in the present circumstance where all manner of criminals now resort to the use of arms, calls for serious concern.
Kidnappers, terrorists, cultists, political thugs, armed robbers, herdsmen, bandits and others now freely use all sorts of guns to pursue their selfish ambition.
Gone are the days when the saying holds that herdsman herds 200 cows with a rod because today, he herds with Ak-47!
It has become so bad a challenging national problem in present time.
The level of insecurity now pervading nooks and crannies of the country has made it seriously imperative that every Nigerian with a patriotic instinct must stand up to be counted in the fight against arms proliferation in our beloved country.
It is in this light SECURITY REPORTERS.com has chosen to align itself with any measure put in place or about to be put in place by the government to seriously check the increasing spate of illegal arms importation into the country.
The security agencies of the Nigerian state should intensify efforts towards checkmating how the guns find their ways into the country.