An Open Letter to President Aquino: PNP rubber Stamp for Implementing Rules and Regulations for RA 10591?
Dear President Aquino,
News has just come out today that the Philippine National Police (PNP) is holding a "public hearing" on Thursday 15 August 2013 at 9am-5pm at Camp Crame for "public consultations" on their draft of the Implementing Rules and regulations (IRR), which had already been made and prepared, for the new Philippine Firearms Law Republic Act No. 10591. This apparently is a clear violation of what is provided in sec.44 of the law which states that the IRR shall be formulated AFTER public hearings and consultations with concerned sectors of society, viz:
"SEC. 44. Implementing Rules and Regulations. – Within one hundred twenty (120) days from the effectivity of this Act, the Chief of the PNP, after public hearings and consultation with concerned sectors of society shall formulate the necessary rules and regulations for the effective implementation of this Act to be published in at least two (2) national newspapers of general circulation."
Having prepared already their draft of their IRR, there appears nothing further to discuss with stakeholders. Notably, PROGUN, which is at the forefront of firearms advocacy in the Philippines, was not even invited, as well as numerous other stakeholders who were never informed of this so-called "public hearing" which is only two days away. Short notice is equal to no notice at all. Likewise, ramming rules down the throats of firearms enthusiasts and stakeholders, is not democracy, it is dictatorship. Moreover, it is contrary to what is stated in the law, and is illegal.
Calling a few selected firearms stakeholders to rubber stamp a preapred draft of the IRR is contrary to the dictates of fair play and due process. As the Chief Executive and Commander in Chief we appeal to your sense of unity with the shooting community that the IRR drafting be made a democratic process as is intended by the law. In this regard, we request that corrective measures may be taken now while the Rules are have not yet been issued with finality, rather than later. In either case, we reserve our right to take whatever subsequent corrective action may be necessary to protect the interests of the firearms community at large and to uphold the rule of law.
Very truly yours,