12 more gun ban violators nabbed

June 2, 2010 8:26 pm 

MANILA, June 2 – Government authorities arrested 12 more civilians for violation of the Commission on Elections (Comelec)-imposed nationwide total gun ban during continuing checkpoint operations on Tuesday.

Philippine National Police (PNP) spokesman Chief Supt. Leonardo Espina said on Wednesday the 12 violators yielded two high-powered and 11 low-powered firearms and a bladed weapon during actual inspection along various checkpoints throughout the country.

Espina said that latest data from the National Election Monitoring and Action Center (NEMAC) showed that as of midnight of June 1, a total of 2,693 individuals, composed of 2,693 civilians and 270 government personnel, including active members of the PNP and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP), have been arrested since the start of the gun ban last Jan. 10.

A total of 2,575 firearms, composed of 963 high-powered and 1,612 low-powered, 826 gun replicas, 674 bladed weapons and 289 grenades and explosives were confiscated from the violators.

The Comelec, through Resolution 8714, ordered the PNP and the AFP to implement the nationwide total gun ban as part of the government’s stepped-up efforts to ensure the peaceful and orderly conduct of the May 10 national and local elections.

Under the resolution, only bona fide members of the PNP, AFP, the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and other government and accredited private security agencies are allowed to carry firearms during actual performance of their duty and wearing proper uniform within the Comelec-prescribed election period which started Jan. 10 and will end June 9.

However, after the peaceful holding of the May 10 elections, clamor for the extension of the gun ban cropped up.

PNP chief Director General Jesus Verzosa vowed to bring up the matter in the upcoming firearms summit to be attended by major stakeholders in the firearms industry. (PNA) scs/MM

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