FEBRUARY 24, 2010: Marking of Firearms Begins

Marking of Firearms Begins
SOURCE: New Vision
By Steven Candia

Kampala — The National Focal Point on Small Arms and Light Weapons recently launched a firearms marking exercise as part of an initiative to stop the increase of illegal arms possession in the country.

Francis Rwego, the assistant inspector general of Police in charge of operations, hailed the exercise, saying it was a step towards proper management of small firearms and light weapons.

"This provides a basis for identification, record keeping and tracing of firearms," he said.

"If a firearm has been recovered, we can trace it to the country where it originated and the last holder."

Rwego was speaking at the function held at the former Police Officers' Mess on Jinja Road in Kampala.

He added that the marking would also improve discipline and check the hiring out of firearms.

"Policemen used to hire out their firearms for criminal use. This will also act as a deterrent to those who may have criminal intentions," he said.

Under the initiative in which all firearms in government possession will be marked, a firearm is given a regional mark, a country code, department number, serial number and a unique identification number, traceable to the holder.