Tue | Aug 20, 2019

Amnesty in Barbados yields few guns

Published:Monday | April 15, 2019 | 11:28 AM

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, CMC – The Barbados government said while it did not expect to have received a “large number” of illegal guns during the gun amnesty that ended last Saturday, the authorities had recovered at least eight guns during the week-long exercise.

“To be frank, the expectation was not really that we would have gotten large numbers. The historical facts in relation to the gun amnesties in Barbados before, you tend to get relatively small amounts of firearms and some that are old,” said Attorney General Dale Marshall.

Marshall, who is out of the island, told the radio station of Starcom Network, that on his return he would be able to provide the island with the number of guns and ammunition returned during the amnesty.

As of Wednesday last week, the authorities had recovered eight guns and 873 rounds of ammunition and Marshall told radio listeners that the majority of the guns submitted belonged to people who had died and some people had suggested that one week was not sufficient for persons to submit illegal guns.

“I don’t know how long it would take for someone to decide to hand in an illegal firearm. I think that’s just one of these excuses,” he added.

Earlier this month, the government announced the week-long gun amnesty in a move aimed at curbing the rise in gun-related murders in the country.

Marshall told Parliament that the Mia Mottley administration was intent on dealing severely with the situation.

“If you have ammunition and you know you have no lawful reason to have, take it to a police station day or night, no questions asked,” he told legislators.

So far this year, more than 20 people have been murdered in Barbados.