VILLAGE watchmen in Cebu City were urged by a police official to surrender their unlicensed firearms, saying they are violating the law.

"Bawal man gayod nang walay lisensiya," said Superintendent Artemio Ricabo, the Cebu City police deputy director for administration.

He said the watchmen can buy licensed genuine pistols, but they need a permit to carry them outside their residences.

A gun owner, Ricabo added, should also undergo neurological test and gun safety seminar.

Police Director General Ronald dela Rosa has ordered the arrest of tanods carrying unlicensed firearms, following the shooting incident due to mistaken identity involving watchmen and police in Mandaluyong City.

Ricabo said there were village watchmen who were involved in shooting incidents.

Last October, Ermita village watchman Junnel Sanchez was charged after he shot and killed theft suspect Lendon Abadinas.

Some watchmen are helpful by informing the police of criminals hiding in their villages, said Ricabo. (KAL/SunStar Cebu)