Tuesday, October 11, 2011
MUNTINLUPA Representative Rodolfo Biazon is pushing for a stricter gun control law after Presidential Political Adviser Ronald Llamas admitted to having five firearms in his possession.
Biazon, former chief-of-staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, said Congress should quickly enact House Bill 12, which provides for stiffer penalties for crimes relating to firearms and light weapons.
“An individual should only be allowed to own only two firearms, one long and one short. You have only two hands anyway so why the need for more than two firearms. You cannot possibly fire more than two weapons at a time,” Biazon said, referring to Llamas.
Llamas admitted to owning two long firearms and three pistols, which are all duly-registered. All have licenses, including permits that allow him to carry them around.
“Was his “staff” covered with appropriate authorization and documentation to act as such and possess and carry said firearms?” Biazon asked. “Firearms in hands of irresponsible citizens have brought insecurity, loss of human lives and damage to property,” he added.
In a text message to Sun.Star, Llamas said that government officials are permitted to carry more than two firearms, especially those with security threats.
“It is an exception rather than the rule. Kung mababago ang rules, willing naman akong sumunod; pero nakuha ko yung mga baril within the present legal parameters,” he added.
Aquino’s adviser had dismissed his two employees–Joey Valderama Tecson and John Brilliant Alarcon–for defying his orders to remove the firearms in his vehicle.
The firearms were caught on tape by the media when Llamas’ two staff members were involved in a vehicle accident along Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City.
Citing figures from the Philippine National Police (PNP), Biazon said the number of loose firearms in the country is at around one million.
In a previous report, 5,999 loose firearms were used in 5,752 crime incidents, the lawmaker added.
“There is therefore a need to strictly regulate and continuously monitor, the unlawful possession, manufacture, dealing in, acquisition or disposition, of firearms, ammunition, and instruments used in the manufacture of firearms and ammunition. We need to provide stiffer penalties for the violation of the same in order to more effectively deter the commission of crimes with the use of firearms,” he pointed out. (Kathrina Alvarez/Sunnex)