Election Related Violence on the Rise

In spite of the best efforts at imposing a total gun ban, it would seem that the efforts at curbing election related violence have been proven to be a failure. As per the statistics, election related killings and violence has been steadily on the rise since 2001, in spite of the Comelec Gun Ban. The current figures of deaths since 1992 as gathered from the PNP and Inquirer files are that a total of 537 have been killed in election related violence since 1992 up to 2007. The highest number of recorded deaths in an election period was in 2004 with 148 dead and 261 wounded, with the year 2007 not being far behind with 121 killed and 176 wounded, as per the PNP and Inquirer statistics.


This year is shaping up to be the bloodiest in Philippine election history. In spite of the total gun ban, 80 persons have thus far been killed, which is well within the striking distance of the record number of killed in 2004, according to the Philippine Institute for Peace, Violence and Terrorism Research. This has brought to question the efficacy and usefulness of the Comelec total gun ban, as appearing to be irrelevant and worthless in the prevention of election related violence. PROGUN has always opposed the Comelec gun ban since its inception since there appears to be no direct correlation between the imposition of a gun ban and the reduction of election related violence. Instead of preventing crime and violence the gun ban merely disarms honest and law abiding citizens and makes them helpless victims of criminals, goons, and private armies, which the police have failed to protect the people against. 


For the first time, this year the Comelec included airsoft toy guns and replica guns, in the gun ban. This move by the Comelec is currently being questioned by airsoft players before the Supreme Court.