17 April 2019

South Africa: Ban Guns for Private Citizens, Says Bheki Cele As 30,000 Weapons Are Destroyed

Minister of Police Bheki Cele says in the future he hopes to see a South Africa where only law enforcement officers would carry firearms.

There should be no guns for private citizens, Minister of Police Bheki Cele said at Arcelor Mittal Steel in Vereeniging on Wednesday, where 30,000 firearms were destroyed.

The weapons were placed in a giant "pot" and smelted, resulting in a hot mess reminiscent of lava. For safety reasons, observers were made to stand well clear of the action.

Cele said most illegal firearms made their way to criminals when they were stolen from homes during robberies.

The firearms destined for the furnace on Wednesday ended up in the hands of the state either through being seized by or voluntarily handed over to the SAPS across the country's provinces.

Gauteng contributed the most firearms to the 30,039 destroyed weapons, "followed by Eastern Cape, Mpumalanga, and then the other provinces".

However, Cele could not provide a breakdown of how many firearms were seized in each province.

He said about 20,000 were voluntarily handed in, while about 10,000 were seized by law enforcement.

The SAPS said that since October 2016 when 23,00o firearms were destroyed, it had seized a...

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