THE Philippine National Police (PNP) widened its gun ban for the Association of Southeast Asian Summit (Asean) Summit this November to include Calabarzon, aside from Central Luzon and Metro Manila, an official said on Friday.
“The gun ban will take effect from November 1 to 15 in Regions III, IV-A, and the [National Capital Region],” Senior Supt. Valeriano de Leon, PNP Firearms and Explosives Office (PNP-FEO) chief, said in a press briefing on Friday.
Calabarzon is Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, and Quezon; Region 3, Central Luzon; and NCR, Metro Manila.
The gun ban, from November 1-15, covered previously Metro Manila and Central Luzon.
De Leon said that law enforcement agents from PNP and the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) were exempted from the gun ban in these regions as long as they followed the mechanics of the order.
“Law enforcement agencies like PNP and AFP are exempted as long as they follow the mechanics of the implementation of the ban. They should be in uniform. They should be on-duty,” de Leon said.
De Leon reminded police that their guns should be issued and licensed by the PNP. He said policemen who were off-duty were not allowed to bring firearms outside of their residences, or they would be apprehended like ordinary citizens.
“Since the [permit to carry firearms]is suspended, the guns should be issued and owned by PNP,” de Leon said.
De Leon said regional directors were ordered to ensure that checkpoints in their areas of jurisdiction would tighten inspection of vehicles for firearms, especially those passing in the vicinity of the Asean Summit.
“You are liable for the firearms you bring,” de Leon warned civilians who would be caught carrying guns.
The Philippines will be hosting the 31st Asean Summit which, aside from the 10-member states, would be attended by leaders from the United States, Russia, China, Japan, the European Union, Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand, and South Korea. RJ CARBONELL