House panel approves bill fixing validity period of firearms

Published November 17, 2021, 6:26 PM

by Manila Bulletin

The House of Representatives Committee on Public Order and Safety, chaired by Masbate Rep. Narciso Bravo Jr., has approved the substitute bill that will fix the validity period of the license to own and possess (LTOP), permit to carry outside of residence or place of business, and registration of firearms on Tuesday, Nov. 16.

It also amends Sections 7, 8 and 19 of Republic Act 10591 or the “Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act”.

The measure consolidated House Bills 3895 and 6109 submitted by Nueva Vizcaya Rep. Luisa Lloren Cuaresma, HB 5127 by Magdalo Partylist Rep. Manuel Cabochan III, HB 5674 by Deputy Speaker and Ilocos Sur Rep. Deogracias Victor Savellano, HB 6912 by Camarines Sur Rep. Luis Raymund “LRay” Villafuerte Jr., HB 8055 by Deputy Speaker and Negros Oriental Rep. Arnolfo Teves, Jr., HB 8271 by Nueva Ecija Rep. Estrellita Suansing, and Senate Bill 1155 by Senator Ralph Recto.

Bravo, in his opening remarks, said that in the previous meeting held last March 9, he pushed for a substitute bill limiting the issues on the validity period of the licensee to own and possess firearms, firearm registration and the permit to carry outside of residence or place of business.

“We have come up with a revised substitute bill that allows gun owners to secure their LTOP and firearm registration with a five-year or 10-year validity reckoned from the birthdate of the licensee and extends the validity of the permit to carry to two years from date of application,” the Masbate solon said.

“This is an important bill considering the proximity of the election period. We have a very limited window of opportunity to act on this.” Among the issues and concerns tackled were the proposals to merge the LTOP and the firearm registration into one card, the periodic conduct of neuro-psychiatric examinations and drug test, and the issuance of a lifetime LTOP, among others.

The committee approved the substitute bill but subject to the response of the Philippine National Police (PNP) on the said issues. It likewise approved the committee report on the substitute bill. (Melvin Sarangay)