PHILIPPINE National Police chief Director General Ronald ‘Bato’ M. dela Rosa yesterday ordered police nationwide to arrest all barangay ‘tanods’ carrying unlicensed firearms while in the performance of their duties in the aftermath of last Thursday’s shooting incident in Mandaluyong City which left two civilians dead and two others wounded.
“First of all, ‘tanods’ are not authorized to carry guns. Thus, I have instructed my men to arrest all ‘tanods’ with (illegal) guns. Magalit na mga local government units pero wala akong pakialam,” he said in a Camp Crame press conference.
Gen. Dela Rosa said that to set the record straight, the PNP is happy to be in the company of barangay security development officers or ‘tanods’ who help keep peace and order in every community.
“But pag namaril na sila using illegal guns, that’s clearly a violation of the law. That’s illegal unless they have been issued PTCFORs,” he said.
The PNP chief, however, said that any person, including a ‘tanod’ who has been issued a PTCFOR or a Permit-to-Carry-Firearm-Outside-of-Residence, should follow its strict conditions. All PTCFOR holders are not allowed to tuck the weapon in their waistline, display their guns in public and should carry it inside a bag. The gun should also not be carried in any place of worship, a mall, market or any places of public convergence.
Dela Rosa said basically, a PTCFOR is a privilege given to qualified individuals for self-defense only. He said that the crackdown will particularly affect ‘tanods’ who are carrying shotguns, pistols or revolvers belonging to LGUs.
He said that only members of Civil Security Units or CSUs are allowed to carry weapons purchased by their LGU while in their prescribed uniform and in the actual performance of duty in the vicinity of the LGU building or the provincial capitol or compound they are guarding.
“However, these guns should not be used by ‘tanods’ in conducting daily patrols. That’s illegal, contrary to law and they can be arrested on sight by the police,” the PNP chief said.
Last Thursday night’s incident in Mandaluyong City underscored anew the failure of some officers to follow to the hilt the Police Operational Procedures made to ensure that no human rights will be violated in the country.
National Capital Region Police Office chief Director Oscar D. Albayalde has ordered a full-blast investigation into the shooting incident which killed Jonalyn Ambaon and construction worker Jomay Hayawon and wounded Ambaon’s live-in partner Eliseo Aluad and driver Danilo Santiago.
It turned out that some Mandaluyong City policemen mistook a white Mitsubishi Adventure carrying shooting victim Ambaon for the getaway vehicle of her assailants and began firing, hitting the four victims.