Although the vast majority of weapons in circulation in Africa was made outside the continent, a part of them – especially weapons intended for hunting – is produced locally by modest craftsmen. This study, conducted largely through a field survey, focuses on the production, repair and detention of homemade firearms in Côte d'Ivoire. It confirms that these phenomena are deeply rooted in traditions, whether that of blacksmiths as producers or Dozos as users. While the demand for such weapons is significantly slowing down, the study also shows that most manufacturers do not produce only weapons, but first of all a wide range of goods intended for household or professional use. While Côte d'Ivoire is in the process of finalizing a new law on arms, political and administrative authorities should take into account these realities to develop appropriate rules, encouraging the registration and compliance of tens of thousands of producers and owners.
Crédit photo : armes en cours de production à Ferkessédougou en Côte d'Ivoire (© GRIP 2014).