PETALING JAYA: A "Bakakuk" is a type of home made shotgun, found largely in Sabah, and generally used for hunting wild animals, as well as to protect traditional farms by local natives.
Some village people are experts in making these weapons, and some of them almost as good as factory-manufactured shotguns.
Bakakuks use real bullets or pellets, which can be bought in the market.
They are made of improvised materials like nails, steel pipes, wooden pieces, bits of string, and tap heads. They are, however, illegal, as there have been many fatal cases involving bakakuks.
The homemade guns are also not reliable and can go off by accident.
Last September, man was arrested in Sook for having a home-made gun.
Earlier, in July, three bakakuks were seized from a group of illegal hunters.
In 2010, a 15-year-old girl was shot dead with a single shot in a house at a village known as Kampung Nabutan, about 30km from the township of Ranau.
The girl identified only as Avita, was shot point blank. The gun's pellets hit her arm first before fatally penetrating her chest.
In 2009, 11 people were arrested and 16 such firearms recovered by police.
A year earlier, village head Datirin Julani, 52, was shot with a bakakuk while riding his motorcycle home from a rubber plantation in Kampung Tenggulun Jaya, also in Sook, Keningau. He was shot in the neck and chest and died on the spot.
There have also been instances when hunter or hunters were critically and even fatally wounded by fellow hunters while hunting deep in the tropical jungles of Sabah. The hunters often mistake their hunting buddies for wild animals.
Reports of drunken people shooting at fellow drinking buddies while armed with bakakuks have been published in the local media in Sabah.
Bakakuk is one of two types of homemade firearms found in Sabah. The other type is ginsuk, which works like a musket.