Commission on Elections (Comelec) Commissioner Rowena Guanzon clarified on Thursday, Dec. 2 that applying for an exception on the ban on bearing, carrying, and transportation of firearms during the election period is through Comelec, not the Philippine National Police (PNP).
“Application for gun ban exemption is online…It is COMELEC, not PNP that grants gun ban exemption,” she said in a tweet.
According to resolution no. 10728, the election period will be from January 9, 2022 to June 8, 2022. The Comelec resolution covers the prohibition against availment or engagement of the services of security personnel or bodyguards. The resolution will be enforcing Sections 32 and 33 of Republic Act 7166.
Under the general provisions, it is stated that “No person shall bear, carry or transport firearms or deadly weapons outside his/ her residence or place of business, and in all public places, including any building, street, park, and in private vehicles or public conveyances, even if he/she is licensed or authorized to possess or to carry the same, unless authorized by the Commission, through the Committee on the Ban on Firearms and Security Concerns (CBFSC), in accordance with the provisions of this Resolution.” It is also stated that “No person shall employ, avail him/herself or engage the services of security personnel or bodyguards, whether or not such security personnel or bodyguards are regular members or officers of the PNP, AFP, other law enforcement agencies of the government or from a private security service provider, unless authorized by the Commission, through the CBFSC or the Regional Joint Security Control Center (RJSCC) in case of a Temporary Authority for Security Detail (TA-SD), in accordance with the provisions of this Resolution.”
A certificate of authority (CA) may be acquired through the CBFSC, a committee in the commission, which shall be responsible for the implementation of the ban on the bearing, carrying or transporting of firearms and other deadly weapons, and the employment, availment or engagement of security personnel, among others, and the rules and regulations on the application for exemption. The resolution states that it has the sole and exclusive power to issue CAs.
The committee will be composed of a member of the Commission en banc as representative of the Commission and CBFSC Chairperson, and one senior officer of the AFP and one Senior Officer of the PNP, not lower than Officer Grade 07, Brigadier General or Police Brigadier General, respectively, as CBFSC members.