4,407 gun holders who failed to turn up for the vetting exercise have been directed to report to the nearest police station within seven days.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i has warned that the firearm holders will be declared armed and dangerous criminals roaming the country if they do not present themselves for vetting.
“If you are holding a fake firearm certificate, or forgot to go for vetting or maybe you did not see the notice, you should report to the nearest police station and surrender. In the event the seven days expire for the 4, 407 holders, they’ll be treated as armed and dangerous criminals,” said the CS.
The Cabinet Secretary was speaking Friday after receiving the final report on the recently concluded vetting of civilian gun holders.
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Matiangi also said the government is yet to locate 10-gun dealers whose information remains scanty.
“The reason His Excellency the President ordered this to be done and why the National Security Advisory Committee and other Security Agencies have been keen to ensure that this exercise is completed, is because we want to deal with the various aspects related to crime in the country. Because we now have a comprehensive digital record of licensed firearms, it means solving crimes will be more efficient,” the CS said.
“The intention the Government has is one where we are living in an orderly and organized community,” he added.
Overall, 9, 398 registered firearm holders were vetted, representing a 70% turn out. 13 licenses improperly issued were revoked while 1, 493 firearms and 21, 732 ammunition were confiscated.
During the exercise, 6, 628 pistols, 1, 604 shot guns, 626 revolvers, 491 rifles, 125 air guns, 44 air rifles, 41 humane killers, 20 maces, two dart guns and one submachine gun were vetted.
The Board cleared 9, 586 firearms to be held by civilians. Nairobi had the highest number of firearms held by civilians at 4, 008 followed by South Rift (1,461), Central (1,102) Coast (1,071), Upper Eastern (869), Nyanza (436), North Rift (323), Western (163) and North Eastern (153).
The Board certified 6, 958 firearm holders across the country. Again, Nairobi with 2, 733 had the lion’s share, followed by South Rift (1, 023), Central (872), Coast (757) Upper Eastern (686), Nyanza (343), North Rift (271) Western (146) and North Eastern (127).
The team behind the report inspected 23 firearm dealers and six shooting ranges/clubs countrywide.
Meanwhile, all the firearm holders who were successfully vetted will from 1st August, 2019, be expected to show a firearm holder’s certificate.
“The holders will be expected to carry the certificates which will be proof that the firearm has been licensed by the Board. Without the certificate, the firearm should be reported to the nearest police station,” said Inspector General of Police Hillary Mutyambai.
“All firearm holders who are security officers from various security agencies will be also expected to confirm that they are security officers by way of showing their certificates of appointment from relevant security agencies. Failure to this, the firearms will also be withdrawn,” he added.
The countrywide mandatory vetting exercise was undertaken by the FLB in three phases between 4th February and 30th May 2019. The practice was guided by the Firearms Act of 2015.
“We intend to strengthen the FLB so that we can increase public awareness about firearms. Also, any firearm that will be misused will be confiscated immediately,” Dr. Matiang’i warned.
Last year, Dr. Matiang’i had announced that all firearms holders’ and dealers’ licenses had been suspended pending fresh vetting at the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI) Academy in South C, Nairobi County.