- It has been revealed that Nigerian police is searching for thousands of arms and ammunition kept in police armoury
- The auditor general who made this disclosure has expressed worries that the missing arms could be in the hands of wrong persons
- The missing arms include AK-47 pistols and several types assorted rifles that are damaged or left unused in different formation across the country
Nigerian police cannot account for over 178,459 different types of arms and ammunition kept in its armoury.
The Office of the Auditor General for the Federation (OAuGF) disclosed this in its 2019 report published on its website.
According to the report, 88,078 of the missing arms were AK-47 rifles, 3,907 assorted rifles and pistols from different formations nationwide as at January 2020.
What is contained in the report
The report, titled AuGF/AR.2019/02, spans 383 to 39 pages and is intended to capture non-compliance and internal control concerns in the Federal Government of Nigeria's Ministries, Departments, and Agencies (MDAs) for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2019.
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According to ThisDay, the audit report accuses the Nigeria Police Headquarters of missing detailed records on unserviceable firearms, warning that such weapons might get into unauthorised hands and be used illegally.
The report also stated that the actions of the Nigeria Police were in violation of Financial Regulations paragraph 2603, which states that in the event of a loss of stores, the officer in charge of the store in question must report immediately to the head of department or unit, but no later than three days, by the fastest means possible if the loss occurs away from headquarters.
Part of the report reads:
“Audit discovered that the overall number of lost weapons reported as of December 2018 was at 178,459 pieces after reviewing the Arms Movement Register, Monthly Returns of Arms and Ammunition, and Ammunition Register at the Armoury department.
"Of this total, 88,078 were AK-47 firearms and 3,907 other rifles and handguns from various police formations that could not be accounted for as of January 2020." Formal reports on the loss of guns via dully filled Treasury Form 146 (loss of shops) were not provided for review.
“Records received from force armament at the Force headquarters revealed that the 21 Police Mobile Force (PMF) Squadron, Abuja, did not record a single incidence of missing firearm, although a schedule of lost arms obtained from the same PMF revealed a total of six cases of missing firearms.
Records obtained from force armament at the Force headquarters showed 21 Police Mobile Force (PMF) Squadron, Abuja, did not report a single case of missing firearm, whereas, schedule of missing arms obtained from the same PMF showed a total number of forty six (46) missing arms between year 2000 and February 2019.
"The worth of the missing guns could not be determined since no documentation pertaining to their acquisition cost was supplied for scrutiny."
The aforementioned abnormalities might be attributable to flaws in the Nigeria Police Force Armament's internal control system.
Several firearms have become unserviceable and dysfunctional as a result of a review of the arm issue register, monthly returns of arms and ammunition obtained from Force Armament, Force Headquarters for various States Commands, Formations, Zonal offices, Training Institutions, squadrons, and physical inspection of firearms and ammunition at the Force Headquarters."
"Similarly, certain Police Training Institutions and Formations did not submit returns, and physical verification of guns and ammunition at the Force Armament, Force Headquarters revealed a substantial amount of broken and antiquated weaponry that needed to be destroyed."
"The damaged and outdated weapons and ammunition shall be disposed in accordance with Financial Regulations 2618, which requires that the destruction be done in such a way that the firearms are rendered unsuitable for their intended function."
EFCC celebrates Chairman's achievement
Bawa was appointed by President Muhammadu Buhari in February to head the anti-graft agency following the infamous exit of Ibrahim Magu.
Among the listed achievements are the recoveries of N6,142,645,673.38 (over N6 billion), $8,236,668.75, £13,408.00, €1,730.00, 200 Canadian dollars, CFA374,000.00, and ¥8,430.00 (Japanese Yen).