Home Affairs Minister Stephen Kampyongo says BOUT 852 foreign nationals living in Zambia own firearms.

Speaking when he was responding to a written question from Kabwe PF member of parliament Tutwa Ngulube in parliament Wednesday, Kampyongo said government has no immediate plans to restrict the use of firearms in public places.

“Yes indeed some foreign nationals living in Zambia with established residents own firearms. The total number of foreign nationals living with licensed firearms was 852 as at 30th September 2018. Government has no immediate plans of issuing a statutory instrument restricting the use of firearms in public places because such restrictions are already provided for under the Firearms Act Cap 110 of the Laws of Zambia. The fire firearms that do not discriminate between foreign and Zambian nationals with regard to the terms of procedures of acquiring firearms, all applicants for firearm licenses are therefore subjected to background and security checks regardless of their nationality,” Kampyongo responded.

The minister observed that some Zambians were abusing their firearms despite being licensed.

“This does not only apply to those foreign nationals who are residents in Zambia, we have seen also Zambian citizens who have abused the licensed firearms. In some cases we have seen couples mishandling the firearms but when someone is applying to be a firearm owner, procedures are followed and the assessments are done and before someone gets a license, they are assessed and they are told and they are oriented to see how competent they are in terms of using the firearm. So where someone becomes reckless, it doesn’t matter whether they have got a licensed firearm, the law applies without looking at the status or the nationality of this particular individual. And the firearms are withdrawn in addition to these people being subjected to the courts of law. So to assure the honourable member, the act I cited is adequate and the restrictions are enough,” said Kampyongo.