During the month of November, police officers in KwaZulu-Natal conducted a number of operations to eradicate the proliferation of illegal firearms in the province. These operations led to the recovery of a total of 418 firearms and 2925 rounds of ammunition.
Most of the firearms were seized in the Zululand, Umkhanyakude, King Cetshwayo, Umzinyathi and Ilembe clusters. Twenty two rifles, 86 shotguns, 293 pistols/revolvers and 17 homemade firearms were seized by police during November 2019.
Eighty (80) suspects were arrested for being in illegal possession of firearms and ammunition. Firearm operations have been intensified in KwaZulu-Natal since the launch of Safer Festive Season Operation in October.
The KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Commissioner, Lieutenant General Khombinkosi Jula stressed that the recovery of firearms have assisted police in solving a number of pending cases and urged the families of deceased firearm owners to ensure that they hand in their firearms to the police.
“Possessing a firearm which was previously licenced to person who is now deceased, is illegal and anyone caught in possession of the firearm will be prosecuted. We urge citizens in possession of such firearms to make use of the current amnesty period to surrender these firearms to police,” he said.
“The Amnesty creates an opportunity for members of the public to surrender illegal possessed or unwanted firearms, ammunition and/or firearm parts to the South African Police Service without fear of being prosecuted for the unlawful possession thereof. The objectives of Amnesty is to reduce the large pool of illegal/unwanted firearms, ammunition and/or firearm parts that are in circulation in the country. A person who surrenders his/her firearm during the period of Amnesty will be required to complete and sign the necessary forms at the nearest police station and must insist on a copy of SAPS 548 (Amnesty form),” he added.
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