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DILG wants PNP, Army assets stripped of guns

09:06 PM November 30, 2011

ZAMBOANGA CITY—Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo sought to remove all exemptions from the gun ban currently in place in this city and Basilan, saying so-called civilian police or military assets shouldn’t be given and allowed to carry guns to stop rampant criminality in the two areas.

Robredo on Tuesday said he has asked police and military to cancel all memorandum receipts (MRs) and mission orders (MOs) issued to civilian assets in this city and Basilan. MRs are documents allowing the issue by government of guns to law enforcers or civilian agents. MOs allow these gun holders to carry their firearms.

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“It is important to maintain peace and order,” said Robredo. He said he was unaware of how many MRs and MOs had been issued to civilian assets in the two areas though he surmised that there could be hundreds of them.

He said aside from civilian assets, local government officials are also routinely issued MRs and MOs.

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Canceling the issuance of these documents, said Robredo, would help police and military detect forged MRs and MOs.

“Because legitimate ones had been canceled, it would be easy for police and the military to arrest those having fake documents,” he said.

Senior Supt. Edwin de Ocampo, city police director, said the gun ban was easier to implement than canceling MRs and MOs.

Canceling MRs and MOs issued to police assets, however, would require coordination with police intelligence officials, said De Ocampo.

“We cannot just dip our fingers in it,” he said. Julie Alipala, Inquirer Mindanao

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TAGS: Basilan, DILG, Gun ban, Zamboanga City
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