Director of Operations in the Department of State Security (DSS), Godwin N. Eteng, has declared that shady individuals in the armed forces and other security agencies sell arms to criminals.
He spoke before the House of Representatives Joint Committee on Customs and Excise and National Intelligence investigating the influx of small arms and light weapons within and into Nigeria.
”Some agencies have over a period of time recruited people who were before cultists and armed robbers and are now wearing uniforms”, Thisday quoted him as saying.
“And the question is: are we doing enough checks on our people who were recruited into security services?
“Like we had a situation where in one of the armouries belonging to one of the armed forces, many pistols just got missing with quantities of ammunition and all the pistols were new.
“In the armoury, no place was broken into, but the weapons were missing. And we’re interested in knowing what happened”.
The official listed Nasarawa, Benue, Taraba, Plateau as states that are conduits for trafficking of small arms and light weapons.
According to him, herdsmen from Senegal, Gambia and especially Central Africa come into the country through illegal borders carrying Ak 47 rifles.
“When we did our studies, we discovered that three- quarter of the arms used to cause the crises in Southern Kaduna, in Zamfara and Plateau States, are coming from the following states: Nassarawa, Benue, Taraba and Plateau states.
“We found out that if you can carry out serious operations to affect the supplies which are coming from these areas, it will seriously limit part of what is happening there.
“Within the last one and a half months, we have conducted more than 27 operations and arrested more than 30 persons involved in the supply of arms and ammunition and some of them are serving security men.”
Eteng, however, disclosed that seven tactical teams are currently conducting the operation to apprehend culprits associated with the nefarious act.