Comments and Suggested Inputs to the PNP Draft Implementing Rules and Regulations for RA 10591
Hereunder are our comments and suggested inputs for the Draft PNP Implementing Rules and Regulations for RA 10591. These comments and suggestions were arrived at a joint effort by PROGUN, Pinoyguns, Lock n Load, and allied organizations and supporters, after several months of discussion and consultation. Please note the following:
1. In spite of our request, we are not members of the technical working group of the PNP (TWG-PNP) for the drafting of the IRR, which we understand is being done under a closed-door policy. We disclaim that we have any direct participation in this process of discussing and drafting the IRR apart from these comments and our attendance at the PNP Open Forum at Camp Crame.
2. Nevertheless, we understand that TWG-PNP is accepting comments and suggestions from civilian stakeholders and organizations. It is in this light that we are submitting these comments and suggested inputs.
3. We have no assurance, and neither are we making any assurance, that our comments and suggestions will be considered or included in the final draft of the IRR.
Suggested inputs and comments to the PNP Draft Implementing Rules and Regulations of RA 10591
Section 4 - ITR requirement for licensing – 1) The ITR requirement should be deemed to include those who are gainfully employed or in business, or retired as evidenced by senior citizen’s card or retirement notice. Note that OFWs or retired persons are not required to file ITRs, by law.
2) Mere pendency of a crime filed in court by the applicant should not be a ground for denial or cancellation of gun license since the Constitution provides for the presumption of Innocence of all persons charged with crimes. Also in order for the crime filed to be a basis of cancellation or denial or firearm license the offense committed must be in relation with the improper or illegal use of a firearm. Any other regular offenses charged of allegedly committed by the applicant or firearms holder, should not be used as basis for denial of application of a firearm, because frequently unscrupulous individuals file harassment cases, which in the end never prosper or end up proven in court.
Section 7 – 1) The law provides that that a permit to carry outside of residence shall be issued whose life is under actual threat or his/her life is in imminent danger due to the nature of his/her profession, occupation or business. The definition of Imminent threat is: “the existence of any condition which could constitute a threat to the safety and life of oneself and that of his family or charges, which is likely to happen at anytime or anywhere.”
2) PTCFOR should be person-specific, meaning that the holder has the option to carry whatever firearm is stated in his firearms license, provided that at any given time, the holder may carry only one licensed firearm registered to him.
3) The term “or such other persons or professions who may be deemed under threat due to their current status, standing, or undertaking” should be added to the list of those under imminent threat.
Section 9. 1) The law provides that the fees shall be reasonable. The sole interpretation of the term “reasonable” should mean that the fees for licensing and registration should not exceed current Fees being charged by PNP-FED, or the base rates for licenses that other government agencies who impose regulatory and licensing fees, charge. Increasing or imposing the licensing and registration fees to exorbitant amounts over and above what is being currently charged could be legally challenged as being confiscatory and unreasonable and unconstitutional. By law, licenses and fees must not be excessive so as to amount to confiscation of property without due process of law. Thus, For fees, we propose the following base rates:
License type 1 – P1000
Type 2 – P2,000
Type 3 – P3,000
Type 4 – P4,000
Type 5 – P5,000
The reason for these base rates, as quoted, is following the current maximum fees being charged which is about P5,000 for a PTCFOR, as well as the comparative base fees for licenses being charged by other government agencies which issue licenses and charge fees, which are deemed reasonable.
For Registration fees we based our analogy with the current fees being charged by PNP-FED for registration of airguns and airsoft guns, which is P500 per gun. There is no basis or reason for the registration fees to go beyond the current fees for registration, as quoted, since registration firearms involves the very same act of encoding and entry into a computer as airguns and airsoft guns. So these registration fees should by analogy, be the same.
2) Storage vault requirement – The vault requirement should include any enclosed or locked container. However, the vault need not be always locked and the firearms may be brought out of the vault for regular maintenance, cleaning, inventory, or use for security purposes.
Section 12- 50 Round Limit – The term “licensed sport shooters” who can possess more than 50 rounds of ammunition should be deemed to include members of gun clubs and recognized shooting or tactical training organizations such as the Philippine National Shooting Association, PNSA, IDPA, and other accredited organizations. Presentation of roster of members and ID system shall be the responsibility of the organization/ club.
Section 18 – 1) The permit to transport (“PTT”) must have a reasonable term of 3 months and not be event-specific or for events only. This is because practice and recreational shooting are normally undertaken in-between competitions and the vast majority of shooters are recreational shooters who go to the shooting range or gun clubs not to compete in events, but on an occasional, non-regular, and recreational basis.
2) The PTT must cover a reasonable area within the licensed gun’s owner’s residential Region or province (such as within NCR, Region 1 or Region 3, etc.) and not just from home to one’s gun club address. Most shooters are invited to attend and compete in other gun club shoots and ranges, some of which are not in the same city, out-of-town, or another province.
3) The PTT may cover all accredited PNP shooting ranges, with a higher fee.
Section 26 – In case of death or the licensed gun holder the regular law of succession under the Civil Code should apply. The heirs automatically inherit the property of the decedent. Therefore, the heirs should be allowed the option to sell the firearms of the deceased gun owner, instead of surrendering the firearms to the PNP within the one year period from death for settlement of Estate under the Rules of Court. The law of succession shall likewise apply to licensed light weapons as well, such that the heirs possess the legal right to either possess themselves or sell or transfer such firearms just as other property of the estate of the deceased.
Section 39 - 1) Mere loss of a firearm which was not attendant with negligence of the owner, should not be a ground for cancellation of the firearms license.
2) It should be provided that only upon loss of three firearms, that such act should be ground for cancellation of firearms license, cancellation of license for loss of one firearm, being too harsh a penalty. For losses of two firearms, the penalty should only be administrative fine. This is to allow the gun owner the opportunity to amend and reform.