Just in case you forgot, the nationwide gun ban is still in effect. The gun ban remains in effect until the official election period for the barangay polls held on October 28 ends on November 12, according to Senior Supt. Wilben Mayor, spokesman for the Office of the Chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP). The reminder came after many people were arrested after October 28 for violating the gun ban. The gun ban is implemented during election period to thwart election violence. Of the more than 50 cases of election violence for the October 28 elections, almost all were perpetrated with the use of firearms. During the election day, the figure of the arrested gun ban violators was at 613 with 509 guns confiscated since the gun ban was implemented on September 28. A day after the election, the figure went to 644 with 539 guns confiscated. As of November 3, a total of 704 people have been arrested with 595 guns confiscated. Mayor explained that the number of arrested people does not match with the confiscated firearms because gun replicas, explosives like grenades and bladed weapons are included in the gun ban implementation. This is the reason why the gun ban reminder is not only issued for gun owners, Mayor said. But Mayor said law enforcement operations against holders of unlicensed guns, explosives and those carrying bladed weapons will continue even after the election gun ban. Among the arrested gun ban violators were nine cops, eight soldiers and eight government officials, including a town mayor of Abra. “They will be charged with appropriate criminal cases,” said Mayor. But for government employees like policemen and soldiers, separate administrative charges will be filed with a maximum penalty of dismissal from the service.
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