December 8, 2023

The NATFORCE Name Change to NATCOM Explained: Dr. Baba Muhammed, the director general of the National Taskforce on the Prohibition of Unlawful Importation-Smuggling of Arms, Ammunition, and Light Weapons (NATFORCE), has addressed the controversy regarding the Taskforce’s recognition as an illegal security organization.

The NATFORCE Name Change to NATCOM Explained

The National Security Council, on Thursday, ordered the National Security Adviser of NATFORCE, to declare its operation illegal.

Rauf Aregbesola, the interior minister, has instructed NATFORCE’s leadership to dissolve the organization immediately or risk having security forces dissolve it forcefully.

In response to the order, Muhammad stated on Saturday that NATFORCE has been integrated into the National Commission since the Senate enacted the legislation creating the NATCOM in July.

Senate Bill Integrated NATFORCE into NATCOM – DG

In a statement made available to journalists in Abuja on Saturday, Baba revealed the bill to create the National Commission for the Coordination and Control of the Proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons (NATCOM). Baba highlighted that with this development, NATFORCE has ceased to exist.

Muhammed insisted that the dissolved security organization was still inconsequential as he recalled his efforts to develop the NATFORCE into NATCOM.

He stated, “I championed the need for NATFORCE to transit to a Commission, NATCOM, in line with the provision that stipulates that the functions of the body shall be in line with Article 24 of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Convention on the Proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons to which Nigeria is a signatory and which came into force in 2009”.

“I distance myself from NATFORCE and all of its operations after Senate passage of the NATCOM bill which has now automatically changed the name NATFORCE to NATCOM”, he said.

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He expressed his gratitude to the National Security Adviser, Major General Babagana Monguno (rtd), President Muhammadu Buhari, the Vice President, Yemi Osibanjo, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, and other key stakeholders for creating an environment that has allowed for the progress that has been made so far in the efforts to establish NATCOM.

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