National Security and the Proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons in Nigeria, 2010-2022
Keywords:Light weapon, Proliferation, Security and Small Arms
This study examined the proliferation of small arms and light weapons as a dimension of the myriad of problems in Nigeria. Nigeria is going through serious cases of insecurity across its territory. This state of insecurity which is mainly orchestrated by the use of small arms has resulted in mayhem, deaths, displacement, and destruction of lives and property in the country. Methodologically, it utilized causal design relying on secondary sources of data collection and documentary evidence which was also analysed qualitatively. Findings have shown that small arms are maximally utilized to perpetrate crimes by various individuals and groups in all areas of the country. The menace has not spared any region ranging from the South-south, South-east, South-west, North-west, North-central and North-east. This study further showed that there is currently intensity of the phenomenon of small arms and light weapons related criminalities in Northeast, Northwest and Southeast. In the Northeast, the activities of Boko Haram are raging. In Northwest, the activities of Fulani militias/invaders have resulted to killings, kidnappings, abductions and displacement of communities. While, in the Southeast, there is Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) militia wing called Eastern Security Network (ESN) and yet to be identified groups called unknown Gunmen who kill and kidnap both security agents and innocent citizens. As such, this study recommends that the issue of effective policing of Nigeria’s porous borders should be made a priority and the government should as well ensure adequate welfare and overall wellbeing of security agents.