KOTA KINABALU: Owners of homemade shotguns locally known as ‘Bakakuk’ have been advised to surrender their weapons to their nearest police station to avoid getting arrested.
Sabah Police Commissioner Datuk Ramli Din said the issue of locals possessing Bakakuk is a statewide problem that needed to be addressed urgently.
“It is illegal to have these types of weapons, especially if one does not have a firearms licence,” he said during a police programme here Wednesday.
“So we suggest those who have these weapons at home to surrender them to the police station,” he said.
Ramli said the police were going after illegal firearm owners aggressively and had recorded 63 cases of Bakakuk possession between January and September.
“This number is so much higher compared to just 15 cases within the same period last year,” he said, adding that Tawau district topped the list followed by Keningau, Kunak and Kinabatangan.
Ramli said Bakakuks were commonly used among locals in Sabah for hunting and protecting their land.
The Bakakuk is made by simply attaching an iron pipe to form the gun barrel, to the steel part that is moulded to form the breech and trigger mechanism. The hardwood forms the grip and stock.
Bakakuks, which use real bullets or pellets, are also not reliable and can go off by accident.
In fact, such fatal cases have been increasing with the latest incident reported on Oct 10.
A man was killed after his cousin fired at him thinking he was a wild animal during a hunting trip in Kota Marudu.
“Owning a Bakakuk or illegal firearm is an offence under the Firearms Act,” Ramli said.