The Senate has received two executive bills transmitted by President Muhammadu Buhari to control the proliferation of arms and regulate the importation and exportation of explosives in the country.
They are: the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons Bill 2021; and Explosives Bill 2021.
The transmission of both bills were accompanied by two separate letters dated the 26th and 27th August, 2021, respectively.
The letters were read during the commencement of plenary by the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan.
President Buhari, in the letter which accompanied the Explosives Bill 2021, explained that request for the consideration and eventual passage of the bill was made pursuant to Section 58(2) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).
According to him, “the Explosives Bill 2021 seeks to repeal the Explosives Act 1964 and enact the Explosives Act, to regulate the manufacture, storage, possession, use, distribution, purchase, sale, transportation, importation, and exportation of explosives and for related matters.”
In the second letter dated 26th August, 2021, President Buhari requested the upper chamber to consider the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons Bill 2021, as means to curb the spate of insecurity across the country.
The letter reads in part: “Pursuant to Section 58(2) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended), I forward herewith, the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons Bill 2021 for the kind consideration of the Senate.
The Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons Bill 2021 seeks to transform the Presidential Committee on Small Arms and Light Weapons into a National Centre for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons under the office of the National Security Adviser.
“National Centre for the Control of Small Arms and Light Weapons, when fully operational used, would go a long way at expressing Nigeria’s optimism and practical commitment to the global fight against the proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons, including the mopping up of existing Small Arms and Light Weapons which have become a significant driver of insecurity across the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”