Palace pushes for centralized gun licensing

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Saturday, March 8, 2014


MALACANANG on Saturday expressed support on the move of the Philippine National Police (PNP) to centralize gun licensing in the country, saying the move is intended to clean the firearms registry that will eventually reduce the proliferation of loose firearms.

It was reported that pro-gun groups have opposed the centralization on the renewal of gun licenses arguing it would only result to more loose firearms.

Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. said the move is necessary as he hopes for public cooperation.

"Paninindigan po ng PNP 'yan at sa tingin po namin ay makatuwiran ang kanilang ginagawa," he said in an interview over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan.

"Ito po ay isang mahalagang transitional measure para matiyak 'yung integrity ng ating firearms registry. At sana ay makiisa din ang mga grupo ng mga mamamayan na sinasabing sila ay responsible gun owners dahil 'yan din po ang layunin ng kampanyang ito ng ating pambansang kapulisan," he added.

Citing the PNP's data, he said there are 1.7 million firearms in the country.

The PNP studied the records of the Firearms and Explosive Office and the civil security groups and found out that 60 to 70 percent of the records of firearm holders are spurious or fictitious.

The PNP observed that there are mismatches in the names, addresses and photos of licensed firearms owners, prompting the PNP to cleanse its gun licensing registry.

"Ibig sabihin, nagbunsod talaga ito ng duda at alinlangan doon sa integrity ng records. Kung sinuman ang resonableng tao na malaman 'yan, siyempre, magiging konklusyon na dapat itong linisin, dapat ayusin ang records at dapat ibalik ang integridad ng firearms registry system natin," Coloma said.

On complaints that it would be very costly for others, including those in Mindanao, to register their firearm/s, Coloma said it could be assumed that anyone buying guns also has the money to pay for the delivery of licenses and cost should not be an issue.

"Hindi dapat maging katuwiran na magiging inconvenient ito dahil for anyone na gustong magkaroon ng prebilihiyo na maging may-ari ng firearm at nakikita naman natin, sigurado namang may kakayahan ito dahil hindi naman biro-biro ang presyo ng isang baril," he said. (SDR/Sunnex)

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