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Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Roundtable meeting \ Issues of civilian disarmament and DDR in Nigeria

On 5-6 April 2017 the Presidential Committee on Small Arms and Light Weapons of Nigeria (PRESCOM) hosted a roundtable meeting focusing on Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration in Nigeria.

All photos: C. Breitung\BICC

In attendance were security advisers to State Governors, Federal Government officials notably from the Office of the National Security Adviser, Maj. Gen. Babagana Monguno (rtd.), who provided the keynote address. Also present were representatives from the Office of the Special Adviser to the President on the Niger Delta, Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Defense, Interior, the Nigerian Customs, Immigration and Nigerian Civil Defence Corp as well as members of civil society organizations such as the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) and the Nigerian branch of the West African Action Network on Small Arms (WAANSA). Lastly, PRESCOM’s multilateral partners from ECOWAS, the European Union and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Abuja, Nigeria also took part in the event.

The roundtable discussion provided a forum for state level security advisers to exchange ideas, experiences in DDR activities with colleagues at the Federal Government level. The focus was on key issues that emerged in past and current civilian disarmament efforts. Outcomes of voluntary and involuntary weapons collection programmes in some states were presented, while social and economic preconditions for reintegrated individuals were also debated and discussed. The roundtable participants identified the need for a national coordinating mechanism, which would facilitate greater inter-institutional cooperation between the States and Federal Governments in civilian disarmament matters.

The two day event was the first organized dialogue bringing together State and Federal level experts to discuss civilian disarmament initiatives in Nigeria. BICC provided technical support for this meeting, which was financed by the German Federal Foreign Office.

Dr. Sani (Program Officer, Small Arms, Directorate of Peacekeeping & Regional Security, ECOWAS Commission) addressing the roundtable participants.

Deputy Ambassador Regine Hess, Brig. General Paul Boroh, Ambassador Imohe, Representative of the Office of the Special Adviser to the President (f.l.t.r.).