Davao imposes total gun ban for Kadayawan festival in AugustBy Ayan C. Mellejor
DAVAO CITY, Philippines—Davao City is imposing a total gun ban for the whole month of August as the city celebrates its traditional Kadayawan festival.
Chief Inspector Caezar Cabuhat, spokesperson of the Davao City Police Office, said the gun ban was approved by Philippine National Police Director General Nicanor Bartolome upon the request of the city peace and order council.
Under the order, all permits to carry firearms outside of residences will be suspended starting August 1.
Cabuhat said even off-duty soldiers and policemen cannot carry guns while the ban is in effect.
“Only members of the PNP, Armed Forces of the Philippines and other law enforcement agencies who are performing official duties and in agency-prescribed uniforms will be allowed (to carry guns),” he said.
To ensure that the gun ban is observed, Cabuhat said, the police will implement an integrated patrol system, which includes the setting up of checkpoints and other operations such as Oplan Sita, Oplan Bakal and mobile and beat patrols.
During the Araw ng Dabaw celebration in March, when a similar gun ban was enforced for two weeks, at least five persons were arrested and charged. But Cabuhat said the cases were dismissed by the City Prosecutor’s Office because there was no official gun ban notice.
Vice Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, who strongly opposed the first gun ban because it allegedly violated a person’s constitutional right to due process and equality of the law, reminded the police of its responsibility to publish the new circular either in the official gazette or national paper of general circulation for 15 days.
Cabuhat said the Davao City Police Office will be posting or distributing copies of the new memorandum in public places such as malls, transportation terminals, government offices, and announce it on television for wide dissemination.
“We took note of the past experience, so we will go around public places and post information on the gun ban,” Cabuhat said.