MANILA, Philippines?Director Roberto Rosales, chief of the National Capital Region Police Office, claimed Friday there has been a decrease in the incidence of crime and attributed it to the gun ban being enforced nationwide by the Commission on Elections and security forces in the runup to the May 10 national elections.
?I think it?s an indication that [plans of] criminal elements like gangs are being nipped in the bud,? he told the Inquirer in an interview, referring to the arrests and confiscation of firearms in different checkpoints across the metropolis.
At one instance, Rosales said his operatives confiscated improvised shotguns from gang members.
Nearly 300 persons have been arrested nationwide, while police have seized over 200 firearms since the gun ban took effect on Jan. 10 The Metro Manila police director credits the mobile checkpoints as an effective measure in implementing the prohibition on firearms.
?They [criminals] don?t know where will our police will setup [the checkpoint],? he said, adding that police also benefited from the additional force they received from the military and the Comelec.
With the different checkpoints, police are able to net loose firearms, as well as collar potential criminals by ?immobilizing? them, which in effect reduces crime, he explained. He described this as a pro-active approach.
He did not cite any comparative crime figures, however, to back up his claim.
The random security barriers also enable authorities to identify problematic areas and identify potential criminals.
Police will intensify their operations come February, when candidates for national positions officially start hitting the campaign trail. ?It [operation] will be bolder next month.?