MPIGI- Police have registered at least 28,000 guns in Kampala Metropolitan Area and Katonga region.
According to Mr Edward Ochom, the director in charge of research of training in the force, the ongoing exercise targets all firearms being held by private individuals, police and private security organisations .
"This is the first phase where we deal with guns from licensed individuals, private security organisations and police. All of them [guns] are handled by police and then, for prisons, they will be handled separately and data will be captured separately but under the same exercise," Mr Ochom, said during the firearms registration exercise at the Katonga Region Police headquarters, in Mpigi Town Council, on Friday .
Mr Ochom said private gun owners in the district who plan to dodge the exercise risk having their licences revoked.
“I want to advise my friends who own guns to make sure they register those guns and individuals who hold guns illegally should bring them to us on the new dates we are yet to announce,” he said. “Those whose are in possession of army and police uniforms, illegally, are also be expected to hand them over to the authorities to avoid sanctions.”
He said they will hold a second phase of the exercise within two months targeting soldiers in army barracks and Internal Security Organisation operatives.
“We'll keep moving to their establishments (divisions) to have all guns registered and fingerprinted," Mr Ochom said.
Mr Phillip Mukasa, the Katonga regional police spokesperson said that during the exercise, old guns in the hands of the targeted groups are being withdrawn and replaced with new ones.
The registration of guns followed President Yoweri Museveni' s directive two years ago, that all guns in the country be fingerprinted to monitor them as part of a nine-points security master plan to contain criminality and murders.
Records in the Ministry of Internal Affairs recently revealed that up to 19,000 guns are owned illegally by civilians or private security firms, which could partly explain the increasing wave of gun-related killings.