In a firm effort to address the growing threat of illicit trafficking of small arms, ammunition, and explosives within the transport industry and the nation at large, the National Commission on Small Arms and Light Weapons (NACSA) has dedicated the months of December 2023 and January 2024 to sensitization and awareness creation. The exercise has seen many impactful public education and awareness campaigns.
The first initiative targeted the Metro Mass Transit Limited (MMTL) at the Kaneshie point in Accra. A team of NACSA officers and a Police officer undertook a comprehensive 3-day sensitization program.
The program aimed to educate and sensitize drivers, bus conductors, supervisors, and parcel officers on the dangers associated with transporting illicit small arms, explosives, and ammunition. In addition, the transport workers were also advised on the need to be security conscious in their day to day operations.
The second campaign took place at the Hamile-Kumasi lorry station where NACSA staff stationed at the Hamile Border Post engaged the public in education and awareness creation initiatives, seizing the opportunity to enlighten the public about the perils of illicit firearms and ammunition.
The staff highlighted the Commission’s mandate and emphasized the need for collaboration, urging the community to provide information about individuals involved in illicit firearms and ammunition trafficking.
In the spirit of the sensitization campaign, two second cycle schools were engaged in the Northern Regional capital, Tamale. This engagement was to kick start a series of scheduled interactions with students in Senior High Schools within the region. The students were educated on the dangers of engaging in illicit proliferation of small arms, and ammunitions as well as the misuse and abuse of same.
The concerted efforts underscore the gravity of the issue within the transport sector and beyond as well as its potential impact on national peace. Recognizing the urgency, stakeholders are now called upon to intensify collaborations with relevant institutions to collectively combat gun violence and associated threats, ensuring a safer and more secure future for the country.