The coordinator of Sierra Leone Action Network on Small Arms (SLANSA), Abubakarr Sheriff, has called on the government of Sierra Leone to ratify the Convention on Small Arms and Light Weapons.
The SLANSA coordinator made this statement on Saturday at the National Stadium’s iEarn centre where the celebration of the global action week against small arms was underway.
Mr Sheriff said he was making this call because the government which, has fresh memories of the mayhem caused by the proliferation of small arms, was dragging its feet to ratify the convention.
He pointed out that, “32,000 people are being killed with guns every year all over the world as a result of conflicts fueled by small arms which also increases poverty and diseases”.
The coordinator revealed that his organization gave tremendous support to Government to help them stop the proliferation of small arms into the country.
As the world also commemorated the Day of the African Child that same Saturday, Mr Sheriff said their celebration of the global week of action against small arms was very timely to reflect the fact that the significant actors were the youth.
He however stated that they were not calling for a total ban “because there is a genuine need for small arms and light weapons but the regulation and complete stoppage of proliferation”.
Andrew Greene, representing International Action Network on Small Arms (IANSA), added that the fight against the regulation of small arms into Africa was not new in itself but had been ongoing.
He agreed that, “Sierra Leone was once being plagued with a conflict so it is imperative that the government ratify the convention,” adding that “we are working on a way to curb this proliferation”.