Election gun ban starts January 13

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Friday, January 4, 2013


THE Police Regional Office in Davao is set to implement the election gun ban from January 13 to June 12 in preparation for the May 13 polls.

Inspector Rowena M. Jacosalem, deputy police officer of PRO-Davao said, in a phone interview with Sun.Star Davao, that they are having a series of meetings and conferences with other officials of PRO in preparation for the five-month gun ban.

Jacosalem also said they will reinforce their campaign against loose firearms as well as to ensure the safety of the candidates during campaign period, the Commission on Elections (Comelec) officials and the public in general.

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Jacosalem also encouraged the public to participate in the implementation of the gun ban saying, "The civilians should also do their part by reporting any violation of the Comelec gun ban. After all, if we apprehend any violators, it may decrease the risk of having shooting incidents."

PRO along with other police offices will suspend the releasing of permit to carry firearms to licensed gun holders. Jacosalem, however, advised licensed gun holders and those who are not exempted in the gun ban to apply for the authority to bear firearms from the Comelec.

Based on Comelec Resolution 9561 released last November 2012 and reported by Sun.Star News Exchange, exempted from the gun ban are members of the Philippine National Police (PNP), and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP); National Bureau of Investigation (NBI); Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP); Intelligence, Investigation and Customs Police Divisions of the Bureau of Customs; Philippine Ports Authority; Philippine Economic Zone Authority police forces; Government Guard Forces; Investigation, and Intelligence Divisions of the Bureau of Immigration; Manila International Airport Authority Police Force; Mactan-Cebu International Airport Authority Police Force; and Land Transportation Office Law Enforcement Service.

Also in the list are agents of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG); Cebu Port Authority Police Force; Internal Security Operations Group of the Department of Justice Witness Protection Program; Optical Media Board; Security Investigation and Transport Department, and Cash Department of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas; Offices of the Sergeant-At-Arms of the Senate and House of Representatives; Inspection Service of the Philippine Postal Corporation; members of the Comelec; National Police Commission; Forest/Park Rangers of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR); Office of the Secretary Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA); Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA); Philippine Center for Transnational Crime; National Intelligence Coordinating Agency; Presidential Security Group (PSG); and Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Units (Cafgus).

Also allowed to carry firearms are members of privately-owned security or protective agencies; justices of the Supreme Court, Court of Appeals, Sandiganbayan, Court of Tax Appeal, and judges of the regional trial courts, and municipal trial courts; and security personnel of accredited foreign diplomatic corps and establishments.

Aside from those, included for the 2013 polls are those from the Internal Security from the Offices of the Vice President; Secretary of Interior and Local Government; and National Defense; State, Regional, Provincial, and City Prosecutors of the Department of Justice (DOJ); Internal Security Division of the Bureau of Treasury; and agents of the Bureau of Corrections.

In the same resolution promulgated November 23, those exempted from the ban on having security personnel or bodyguards are the President; Vice President; senators not running in the elections; justices, judges; Cabinet secretaries; Comelec officials; AFP commanders; and top PNP officials.

Under the Code, no candidate for public office, including incumbent public officials seeking election to any public office, shall employ services of security personnel and bodyguards. (Ruji Peter S. Abat/Sunnex)

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on January 05, 2013.

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