IGP Ochola Bans Guns To Private Citizens

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The Inspector General of Police (IGP) Martin Okoth Ochola has halted fresh licensing of private firearms to civilians.

The ban which comes barely three months since Ochola was appointed IGP replacing Gen Kale Kayihura will affect fresh applicants and those whose applications are still pending.

Police statistics indicate that there are more than 4000 licensed civilians to hold a privately licensed firearm and more than 1000 applications pending approval by the office of the IGP.

According to the Police spokesperson Emilian Kayima, the ban has been put in place to create room for a comprehensive audit into fire arms in the hands of civilian and private security companies.

In March 2018, a fresh audit of police firearms was done countrywide. A report is yet to be handed over to the IGP.

Immediately after the audit was completed, an order was issued for all firearms in the hands of civilians to be audited.

The Divisions and Districts police stations are to spear head the audit of civilians holding privately licensed firearms in their areas and issue a report to the Firearms department of Police.

Areas of concern in the audit include firearm specification, where they were bought from, previous abuse records, bullet accountability among many others.

Every private firearm license expires on the 30th of November every year. The license holders apply for renewal before this time.

This year, renewal is to be based on the outcome of the audit.

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