SINCE the start of the election gun ban last Sunday, at least 11 people have been arrested at checkpoints in Cebu City, not for guns but for illegal drugs.
The operations yielded 62 sachets of white crystals believed to be shabu and a syringe believed to have been used for nubain.
Operatives of the Mabolo Police Station also arrested two men for violations of the election gun ban.
They were identified as Arturo Ybañez, 38, of Barangay Gun-ob, Lapu-Lapu City; and Virgilio Ngujo, 24, of Sta. Rosa in Olango Island.
Ybañez was driving his bike on S. Osmeña Blvd. when police flagged him down at 11:05 p.m. Found in his possession was a .22 Magnum revolver with no serial number.
Ngujo also carried a .357 Magnum revolver, also unlicensed, and four .38 live bullets.
A team from Parian Police Station led by SPO1 Ritchie Jay Ondo handcuffed nine motorists carrying shabu. They included Lauro “Junjun” Lauron Jr., 45; and Vernaes “Chito” Bejasa, 34.
Also arrested were Joniey Blaco, 32; Jesus “Aloy” Timbal, 24; Pablo Toñacao, 31; Claire Padon, 33; Joseph Alvic Nieves, 22; James Ramos Misa, 35; and Mark Ryan Quipot, 34.
San Nicolas Police Station also arrested Ronald “Kugtong” Blanza, 44, on Magsaysay St. in Barangay Suba at 3 p.m.
Provincial Election Supervisor Lionel Marco Castillano asked motorists to understand policemen who conduct checkpoints.
The election gun ban began to be implemented last Jan. 10, the first day of the election period.
“We are asking the motorists to understand the policemen because this is for their own good and not only for the election. It could also be (for the purpose of) anti-criminality kay naay uban mag-motor-motor naa diay dala armas, manulis (because there are persons on motorcycles that are bringing firearms to rob),” Castillano told reporters.
Last Sunday, a part-time teacher in a state university was arrested after he allegedly tried to get his firearm blessed during a mass in St. Augustine de Hippo church in Poblacion, Carmen.
For complaints related to the gun ban, Castillano said the complainants should go to the election officer of their area.
The police officials will have to notify the election officer where and when the checkpoints are conducted.
Castillano said he has instructed the election officers to coordinate with their police chiefs.
The Provincial Election Supervisor’s Office is waiting for the resolution from Comelec Manila for the guidelines during the campaign period.
The campaign period for the national candidates will start on Feb. 9 and March 25 for the local candidates.
At the airport, Senior Supt. Joselito Salido, chief of the Aviation Security (ASU) 7, said they arrested a person caught carrying an empty shell in Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA) in Lapu-Lapu City.
“Please do not bring any amulet during the election season,” he warned the public.