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The Enugu State Police Command says it has recovered a total of 148 illegal firearms in the state since February 2018.

Commissioner of Police, Enugu State, Mohammed Danmallam, made announcement while displaying the weapons at the headquarters of the police in Enugu.

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Danmallam also disclosed that 155 ammunition of different calibres, as well as 206 cartridges, were recovered by the Command during the period.

The recovered arms are 10 AK47 riffles and 30 pump action guns, 33 locally made single-barrelled pistols and 36 locally made double-barrelled pistols.

He stated that also recovered by the police within the same period were eight locally made cut-to-size short guns, three locally made revolver short guns, 11 Barreta pistols and 17 single-barrelled long guns.

According to Danmallam, the recoveries followed the setting up of a task force that was mandated to mop up illegal arms and ammunition in Enugu State.

He further explained that he set up the task force after the Inspector General of Police directed all commands in the country to recover illegal weapons in a bid to curb the proliferation of arms and the emergence of militia groups in the country.

The task force headed by Frank Idu, an Assistant Commissioner of Police, has representatives from the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, Federal SARS, the Police Counter Terrorism Unit and the State Crimes and Investigations Department as members.

Danmallam also explained that all the weapons, apart from one of the pump action guns, were not returned voluntarily by their erstwhile owners.

“They were not voluntarily returned; they were recovered through the efforts of the task force in stop-and-search operations, and raids on criminal hideouts,” the Enugu police commissioner said.