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By JON VIKTOR D. CABUENAS, GMA News
President Rodrigo Duterte said the police and military force should be automatically exempted from the gun ban of the Commission on Elections (Comelec), even as he noted that some uniformed personnel have the tendency to shoot when inebriated.
During the Talk to the People aired Tuesday morning, Duterte said members of the police and the military would have difficulties in securing clearances as they would have no time to process this.
“Getting individual clearances from the Comelec is really a bad idea, kasi po [because] some policemen are assigned in an area different from where he is attuned to there, or he lives outside the area of his jurisdiction or assignment papauwi ng bahay, ito minsan nahuhuli, [going home, they are sometimes apprehended.]” he said.
Duterte said the uniformed personnel are supposed to act according to their oath of office with or without an exemption from the gun ban, and do what is “right” and fulfill their duty.
“Dapat tanggalin nila ‘yan. There has to be a maturity even in our laws. Dapat talaga automatic na sana ‘yan, but that’s just my… ‘yung ano ko, being mayor for so many years,” he said.
[They should remove that. There has to be a maturity even in our laws. This should be automatic but that’s just my [suggestion] being mayor for so many years.]
“You know elections here are a heat game for some politicians. After the elections, there is still the possibility of violence before, during, and after the certain period. It’s not time to be imposing some requirements,” he continued.
Under Comelec Resolution 10728, the bearing, carrying, or transporting firearms or deadly weapons outside residence or place of business and in all public places is banned from January 9 to June 8, 2022 amid the national elections.
The Comelec earlier amended this to exempt the Office of the Vice President, senators, congressmen, court justices, Cabinet secretaries up to assistant secretaries, along with their security detail.
The poll body also granted Chairperson Saidamen Pangarungan the authority to grant gun ban exemptions for “urgent and meritorious cases”, and place identified election areas of concern under Comelec control.
Pangarungan earlier clarified that Duterte already has an exemption as the commander in chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, and the agency already issued a general authority to carry firearms for the military and the police.
“I know for sure that it is not under the Constitution. If it’s included in this Constitution, then it is stupid and should be removed from the books,” Duterte said.
“Hindi maganda. It’s just eh ang pulis talaga, kung talagang manggulo ‘yan, malasing, manginom ‘yan, maski ano malasing ‘yan, paputok na,” he continued.
[It is not nice. It’s just that the police, if they would cause a ruckus, get drunk, shots would be fired.]
For his part, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año dismissed the reports of police and military being apprehended in checkpoints for lack of clearance as “isolated incidents.”
“Kapag naka-uniform at nasa area of operation or area of responsibility, hindi hinuhuli. Meron naman kaukulang mission order,” he explained.
[If they are in uniform and in the area of operation or area of responsibility, they are not apprehended if they have the corresponding mission order.] — RSJ, GMA News
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