Kenya: Gun Owners Association Expresses Concern Over 'Possible' Misuse of Firearms

18 January 2020

Nairobi — The National Gun Owners Association of Kenya (NGAO) have expressed concern over reports of possible misuse of firearms by civilians in the recent past.

"As an Association we are especially concerned that these few irresponsible licensed firearm owners are giving the remaining close to 18,000 responsible firearm owners a bad name," said NGAO in statement to newsrooms.

The association said that the use of a firearm as envisaged by law, is only justifiable for the protection of life and property.

The association has maintained: "Firearms are not meant for use during domestic disputes; in public places; during road-use conflict; or where the danger is not imminent to the owner of the firearm, their family or their property. Firearms are especially not to be used when the owner is intoxicated or inebriated."

NGAO has request the Minister of Interior and Coordination of National Government as well as the Inspector General of Police and Director of Criminal Investigations to take stern action according to the law on cases involving misuse of firearms, be it by civilians or members of the disciplined forces, without unnecessarily restricting legitimate and responsible use of the same firearms.

"As was witnessed during the tragic terrorist attack at the Westgate Shopping Mall and Dusit D2 , most licensed civilian firearm owners are conscientious Kenyans, driven by a desire to help make their spaces safer for not only for themselves and their families, but also for other Kenyans when circumstances dictate," read the NGAO statement.

NGAO has expressed support for careful and regular vetting of all civilian firearm owners to ensure that everyone entrusted with the responsibility to own a firearm is actually worthy and deserving of such responsibility.

"As an Association we have endeavored to continuously train our members to improve their proficiency and we also continuously hold seminars in conjunction with the DPP and senior lawyers in order to empower our members on provisions of the law as far as justifiable use of the firearms is concerned," concluded the statement.

The impassioned statement comes in the wake of a shooting incident, Friday morning in which Embakasi East MP Babu Owino is accused of shooting a DJ at a club.

CCTV footage from B-Club showed the MP smoking shisha and drinking with his friends, he then drew a gun and shot at the DJ who was later seen being dragged outside by two men.

Babu's lawyer Cliff Ombeta defended him saying that the shooting was not intentional and that the first time MP was just reacting to a perceived threat to his life.

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