24 Apr, Wednesday

central firearms bureau and its functions in kenya – firearms licensing board vs CFB

This article is about central firearms bureau and its functions in Kenya. The Central Firearms Bureau (CFB) in Kenya was established as a regulatory and oversight body under the Firearms Act, which is the primary legislation governing the acquisition, possession, and use of firearms in the country. The establishment of the CFB is mandated by law, and it plays a critical role in the control and supervision of firearms within Kenya. We also tell you about Firearms Licensing Board, also established under the Firearms Act. Then we try to distinguish between them.

Functions of the Central Firearms Bureau

The CFB has several important functions, which include:

1. Issuing and Regulating Firearm Licenses

The CFB is responsible for processing and issuing firearm licenses to eligible individuals. It conducts background checks and verifies the suitability of applicants to possess firearms. The bureau also specifies the type of firearm and any associated restrictions in the issued licenses.

2. Conducting Firearm Safety Training

The CFB plays a role in overseeing and setting standards for firearm safety training programs in Kenya. This includes accrediting and regulating training institutions that provide courses on responsible firearm handling and use.

3. Maintaining Firearm Records

The CFB maintains a comprehensive database of all legally owned firearms in Kenya. This database includes information about firearm owners, types of firearms, and license details. This record-keeping is essential for tracking and controlling firearms in the country.

4. Inspecting Firearm Dealers and Shooting Ranges

The CFB conducts regular inspections of firearm dealers, manufacturers, and shooting ranges to ensure compliance with relevant laws and regulations. This oversight helps maintain the integrity of the firearms industry in Kenya.

5. Enforcing Firearm Laws

The bureau enforces the Firearms Act and its associated regulations. It investigates and takes appropriate actions in cases of non-compliance, misuse, or violations of firearm laws. This includes taking action against individuals who possess firearms without valid licenses.

6. Advising on Firearm Policy

The CFB provides expert advice and recommendations to the Kenyan government regarding firearm policies, regulations, and amendments to existing laws. This advisory role helps in shaping firearm-related policies and legislation.

7. Collaboration with Law Enforcement

The CFB collaborates with law enforcement agencies, such as the Kenya Police Service, to ensure the safe and legal use of firearms. It assists in the investigation of firearm-related crimes and promotes coordination among relevant authorities.

8. Monitoring and Tracking Firearms

The CFB plays a crucial role in monitoring and tracking firearms within the country. This includes keeping tabs on firearms that are imported, manufactured, or sold in Kenya. By maintaining records and tracking the movement of firearms, the CFB can ensure that all firearms in the country are accounted for and that their ownership is legal. This is a vital measure in preventing the illegal trade and trafficking of firearms, which can lead to increased crime and insecurity.

9. Public Education and Awareness

One of the key functions of the CFB is to engage in public education and awareness campaigns. These campaigns aim to inform the general public about the responsible use of firearms and the legal requirements for owning a firearm in Kenya. Through these efforts, the CFB seeks to promote a culture of responsible firearm ownership and safety, reducing the risk of accidents and misuse.

Public education initiatives may include workshops, seminars, and informational materials to ensure that firearm owners and potential applicants understand their rights and responsibilities. Educating the public on the importance of safe and legal firearm use is essential for fostering a sense of civic responsibility and ensuring compliance with firearm laws.

10. Managing Firearm Amnesties

Periodically, the Kenyan government may declare firearm amnesties, during which individuals are encouraged to voluntarily surrender illegal or unregistered firearms without facing legal consequences. The CFB plays a central role in facilitating these amnesties. By providing a structured and safe process for individuals to surrender firearms, the CFB helps reduce the number of illicit firearms in circulation. This, in turn, contributes to overall public safety by decreasing the risk of firearms falling into the wrong hands.

11. Reviewing Appeals and Disputes

The CFB is responsible for handling appeals and disputes related to firearm license applications or revocations. This function ensures that applicants have a fair and transparent process to address grievances or concerns. If an individual’s firearm license application is denied or their existing license is revoked, they have the right to appeal the decision. The CFB conducts reviews and investigations to address these appeals, taking into account all relevant factors before making a final determination.

12. International Collaboration

Firearm-related issues often have international dimensions, such as arms trafficking, illicit trade, and international arms control agreements. The CFB collaborates with international agencies and organizations to address these transnational challenges. This cooperation may involve sharing information, participating in joint initiatives, and implementing measures to combat the illegal movement of firearms across borders. Kenya’s collaboration on the international stage helps the country meet its obligations under various international agreements and contributes to global efforts to control the spread of firearms.

13. Regular Reporting

The CFB compiles and submits regular reports to the relevant government authorities. These reports provide comprehensive information about the status of firearm ownership and compliance with firearms regulations in Kenya. They may include data on the number and types of firearms, the status of licenses, and trends in firearm-related incidents. By providing this information, the CFB informs policymakers and the public about developments and issues related to firearm ownership. These reports also support evidence-based decision-making on firearm-related policies and regulations.

14. Capacity Building

The CFB is actively involved in building the capacity of law enforcement agencies and other stakeholders who play a role in the regulation and oversight of firearms. This includes providing training, guidance, and support to ensure that firearm laws and regulations are effectively enforced. By enhancing the capacity of relevant bodies, the CFB contributes to more robust enforcement of firearm laws, better control of firearms, and improved public safety.

difference between central firearms bureau and firearms licensing board

Central Firearms Bureau (CFB):

  1. Establishment: The CFB was established under the Firearms Act and is primarily responsible for the day-to-day administration and implementation of the firearms laws in Kenya.
  2. Functions: The primary functions of the CFB include issuing and regulating firearm licenses, conducting background checks, ensuring compliance with firearms laws, overseeing safety training, maintaining records of legal firearm owners and their firearms, and monitoring the movement of firearms.
  3. Location: The CFB is usually located in the capital city, Nairobi, and serves as the central office for firearm-related matters.
  4. Operational Focus: It focuses on managing and controlling the acquisition, possession, and use of firearms within the country. It is involved in interactions with the public, processing license applications, and conducting regular oversight and enforcement activities.

Firearms Licensing Board (FLB):

  1. Establishment: The Firearms Licensing Board is also established under the Firearms Act but serves a different purpose. It acts as an appellate body that reviews decisions made by the CFB regarding firearm licenses.
  2. Functions: The primary function of the FLB is to hear appeals and disputes related to firearm license applications, revocations, and other decisions made by the CFB. It provides individuals with a forum to address grievances or concerns if they disagree with the CFB’s decisions.
  3. Location: The FLB may convene at different locations as needed when hearing appeals, and its decisions are made based on these hearings.
  4. Operational Focus: The FLB’s main role is to review and adjudicate appeals and disputes. It acts as an independent body that ensures transparency and fairness in the application of firearm laws and regulations.

Resposible for regulating, licensing and controlling the manufacture, importation, exportation, transportation, sale, repair, storage, possession and use of firearms, ammunition, airguns and destructive devices.

faqs about central firearms bureau

1. What is the Central Firearms Bureau (CFB)?

The Central Firearms Bureau (CFB) is a regulatory and oversight agency established under the Firearms Act in Kenya. It is responsible for overseeing the acquisition, possession, and use of firearms in the country.

2. Why was the CFB established?

The CFB was established to ensure the responsible and legal use of firearms in Kenya. Its primary goal is to control and supervise firearms ownership and usage, thereby contributing to public safety and national security.

3. How do I contact the CFB in Kenya?

You can contact the Central Firearms Bureau in Kenya through their official channels, which may include a physical office, telephone, or email. It’s recommended to check the official government website or contact local authorities for the most up-to-date contact information.

4. What is the role of the CFB in regulating firearms?

The CFB plays a central role in regulating firearms by issuing licenses, conducting background checks, enforcing firearm laws, overseeing safety training, and maintaining records of legal firearm owners and their firearms.

5. Can foreigners apply for firearm licenses through the CFB?

Generally, firearm ownership in Kenya is limited to Kenyan citizens. Foreigners may be allowed to possess firearms in exceptional cases, such as for diplomatic purposes or specific professional roles, but they need to adhere to strict regulations.

6. How long does it take to process a firearm license through the CFB?

The processing time for a firearm license can vary, but it often takes several months. The time may be influenced by factors such as the volume of applications and the thoroughness of background checks.

7. What are the different types of firearm licenses issued by the CFB?

The CFB issues various types of firearm licenses based on the intended use, such as licenses for personal protection, sport shooting, or professional purposes. The specific type of license you receive depends on your genuine reason for needing a firearm.

8. Can I transfer or sell a firearm with a CFB-issued license to another individual?

The sale or transfer of a firearm to another person is subject to strict regulations. You should consult with the CFB or local authorities to understand the legal procedures for transferring or selling a firearm to another individual.

9. How often do I need to renew my firearm license with the CFB?

Firearm licenses issued by the CFB are typically valid for a limited period, often one to three years. It is the responsibility of the firearm owner to renew their license before it expires to maintain legal ownership.

10. What is the CFB’s role in combating illegal firearms in Kenya?

The CFB plays a significant role in combating illegal firearms by monitoring and tracking legal firearms, conducting amnesties to reduce the number of illegal firearms, and cooperating with law enforcement agencies to investigate and address illegal firearm possession and trafficking.

How to apply for Firearms License