Control of Unlawful Possession and Movement of Small Arms and Light Weapons to Exterminate Insecurity in Nigeria

Publication Information

Journal Title: Journal of Legal Studies & Research
Author(s): Raphael Olukayode Adeolu
Published On: 29/08/2023
Volume: 9
Issue: 4
First Page: 149
Last Page: 162
ISSN: 2455-2437
Publisher: The Law Brigade Publisher

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Raphael Olukayode Adeolu, Control of Unlawful Possession and Movement of Small Arms and Light Weapons to Exterminate Insecurity in Nigeria, Volume 9 Issue 4, Journal of Legal Studies & Research, 149-162, Published on 29/08/2023, Available at


The nefarious acts carried out with arms and weapons unlawfully possessed by many people in Nigeria, a developing country in Africa is a serious threat to the peace of the nation. It has a devastating effect on the economy of the nation which has greatly been dwindling since the security situation of the economy has been aggravated. This paper examined the daily manifestation of killings; the global efforts against proliferation; their free flow into Nigeria and the negative externalities militating against the nation’s development. The paper relied on doctrinal (theoretical) legal research methodology. It relied on international and regional legal framework; municipal law, case law and other relevant legal authorities. It also relied on newspapers, textbooks, journals and internet materials. They were all exposed to content analysis. The paper discovered that imported arms are easily smuggled into Nigeria; proliferated in the country; illegally acquired; used to threaten and terminate people’s lives thereby making the country a dangerous place to leave. The state of insecurity is so serious to the extent that it had crippled the economy and it is threatening the existence of the nation. It had made some ethnic groups in the country to be agitating and planning to break away from Nigeria to become separate sovereign nations. The paper concluded that the movement protocol of ECOWAS has been abused and it has a devastating effect on Nigeria’s economy. Hence, the nation has to check the inflow of the dangerous weapons being smuggled into the economy. The international instruments and the local legal framework should be strictly applied to stem the tide.

Keywords: Insecurity, arms, weapon, killings, proliferation, unlawful possession, movement protocol, negative externalities

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