Tanzania: Kagera Police Seize Firearms


By Meddy Mulisa, Tanzania Daily News

Date Published
Bukoba — POLICE in Kagera Region have recovered an assortment of firearms including hand grenades.

It is suspected that the weapons were being used in criminal activities such as hijackings and robberies, the Kagera Regional Police Commander (RPC), George Mayunga has said.

Mr Mayunga said that on February 6, this year, police detectives impounded a G3 rifle with two magazines and 18 rounds of ammunition in Kilimilire Village, Misenyi District.

He said that two days later, police recovered a sub-machine gun (SMG), two hand grenades and 54 rounds of ammunition in Kabanga Village, in Ngara District.

Three suspects abandoned the firearms and fled to a neighbouring country, he said.

The Regional Police Chief also said that on February 24, this year, police seized several rounds of ammunition in Lusahunga Village, Biharamulo District which were being used by poachers to kill elephants and rhinos.

He said that four suspects were rounded up by police and found in possession of the ammunition in a bag loaded on a bicycle.

In August, last year, police in Kagera Region arrested 20 suspected bandits who hijacked two buses at Kasindaga on the Muleba- Biharamulo districts’ border.

Several firearms were recovered. A group of about ten heavily armed bandits, believed to have crossed the border into the area from a neighbouring country, ambushed two buses with registration numbers T 495 AGT and T644 BUR.

It has been established that some of the guns brandished by robbers come from military arsenals or other security establishments. Some have been stolen in neighbouring countries.

A recent campaign against illegal ownership of firearms succeeded in seizing 304 guns. The find pointed to the reality that too many arms were in dangerous hands.

The situation prompted the government last year to issue an ultimatum to holders of illegal firearms to surrender them to the State.

The Police Force recorded a total of 876 criminal incidents between January and September, last year, in which small arms were used and 62 firearms were stolen.

Meanwhile, RPC Mayunga has urged residents in the region to be vigilant with fake bank notes.

He said that a businessman, who has been identified as Sarafina Mathias (43) from Kashai Ward in Bukoba Municipality was conned of 560,000/- after unknown people gave him 10,000 fake banknotes.

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