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Firearms and Ammunition Control Board officially named and has its first meeting

Posted: Friday, January 5, 2024. 2:34 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: A new regime in the licensing and regulation of firearms and ammunition has begun with the appointment of the new Firearms and Ammunition Control Board (FACB).

Appointed by Minister of Home Affairs Kareem Musa are new CEO in the Ministry Sharole Carr-Saldivar; Magistrate Mannon Dennison; and Senior Superintendent of Police Clement Cacho.

The Firearms Act was amended in late 2023 to replace the Commissioner of Police, currently Chester Williams, as the sole authority empowered to regulate firearm acquisition and usage. The FACB is mandated to issue and revoke firearm licenses, certificates, or permits, and reform the regulatory structure for firearms and ammunition.

The new Board met for the first time on January 4, Thursday. Its new powers and functions include but are not limited to receiving, screening, and processing firearm applications, and designating approved Firearm Safety Instructors; receiving and investigating complaints concerning a breach of any term or condition of a firearm authorization; ensuring general compliance with the provisions of the Firearms Act; causing to be conducted audits of firearms and ammunitions, reviews of the issuance and denials of licenses, and inquisitions and investigations; and developing and implementing digital management of firearms and ammunition system.

The Ministry and Government promise to “transform and reform how the Government of Belize regulates the sale, purchase, importation, exportation, trans-shipment, disposal, possession, and use of firearms and ammunition,” and further amendment or possibly replacement of the Firearms Act is contemplated.

 

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