Permit to carry firearm outside residence (PTCFOR) means a person is in an imminent danger position as provided by Republic Act 10591 (Comprehensive Firearms & Ammunition Law). This person is a professional and either a Member of the Philippine Bar; Certified Public Accountants; Accredited media practitioners from recognized media institutions; Cashiers and bank tellers; Priests, Ministers, Rabbi, Imams; Physicians and nurses; a Businessmen, who by the nature of his or her business or undertaking duly recognized or regulated by law, is exposed to high risk of being targets of criminal elements, or those individuals with threat assessment certificate.
The wisdom of passing this law? One is allowed to carry a gun to deter his assailant, usually hired killer, who would be emboldened to kill him with illegally availed pistol or automatic weapon if he learned that one does not carry a firearm with him.
PTCFOR therefore was deterrence to would be assailant. With deterrence it means crime rates would be on the diminishing curve if not on the average as numbers of perpetrators think twice before they resort to their dastardly acts.
Suspension of PTCFOR makes Legitimate Gun Holders Vulnerable
Suspend the PTCFOR, just like what Philippine National Police Chief Allan Purisima had done to Pangasinan, means death tolls escalate as the enemies of those people protected by the Comprehensive Firearms & Ammunition Law would be under the mercy of hit men – who until now are still exhilarated to the actuation of the president and the chief of the PNP.
“Wild Wild West and Gunfight at O.K Corral are back again!,” one of the malefactors probably cried as he raised his glass for a toss with fellow killers.
If Ramon Tulfo assailed in his column that President Benigno Simeon Aquino III was a hardheaded fellow with a damn-the-torpedo principle on a usurpation and technical malversation's Disbursement Acceleration Program that could put him in a Gloria Arroyo non-bailable jail bind, his order to Purisima for the suspension of the PTCFOR in Pangasinan did make him manifestly incompetent who shoots in the hips without asking first the legal and psychological backlash of his plan that could snap out the lives of every Tom , Dick, and Atong of the PTCFOR family.
Remember, the suspension of PTCFOR ensued because a presidential pal Urbiztondo Mayor Jun Balolong was assassinated.
Purisima's Suspension of PTCFOR is not backed up RA 10591
Was it all for show for the president that he cares for a friend who used to be a co-worker in the Oreta-Aquino Construction Company- as what Balolong told me inside his Toyota Land Cruiser at EDSA two years ago? Was it for the safety of the Pangasinenses that suspending the PTCFOR another mayor and another high level official's lives in the province would be spared from the jaw's of death ?
But what will happen to professionals, and other threatened individuals whose everyday activity would be under the specter of the Grim Reaper as their only protection to carry firearm has been suspended by the government without evaluating the pros and cons of its wisdom?
It does not even have a basis.
“The decision of Purisima was arbitrary. It is a violation of the constitutional rights (of due process) of the citizen to bear arm. What was his authority? There should be first a board resolution before he suspended it,” lawyer Joseph Samson emphatically told me when I bumped into him recently.
But apologists for Purisima would argued that there is the ubiquitous checkpoints put obligingly by the police top brass for cops to check motorcycle ride to discourage criminals who are motorcycle riders in tandem (MRT) to perpetuate their trade.
Many saw the chief PNP's blunder as sheer obeisance to an ignorant president so he would not fall under his good graces.
Police Check Points in Pangasinan could not Prevent Hired Hands
But policemen at check points only ask riders to stop, show their license and vehicle registration, and did not bother to arbitrarily frisk them fearing they could be culpable for illegal search that could undermine their (cops) service.
(Here's my formula to lower shooting incidents and other crimes that you can accessed at http://wwwmortzcortigoza.blogspot.com/2013/09/stop-and-frisk-will-mitigate-gun.html
Policemen ignore cars like that black Toyota Innova where the assailants of Balolong jumped off and gun- a- blazing just like in a Bong Revilla –Jinggoy Estrada flick where the actors peppered with Armalite automatic rifles' bullet the movie villain.
So how can the suspension of firearms discourage the would be criminals? The act was idiotic as the president and the chief of the national police deprive the legitimate gun holders a deterrence while it encourage the hired killers with their illegal guns to check if there are no police check points and pounce on their vulnerable victims.
In case death tolls spike in the province after the suspension of carrying of firearms the president and Purisima could their wits and know the wisdom of PTCFOR.
Suspension Violated the Constitutional Proprietary Rights and Rights of Self Defense
When I was browsing the comprehensive firearms law, I did not see the power of the chief PNP to suspend arbitrarily the rights of the entire community of their PTCFOR.
Here the president and Purisima have blatantly violated the rights of the gun holders that smack on the property rights and rights of the citizens’ to self-defense in the Constitution.
"The ground for suspension, cancellation, or revocation in case the gun owner used the firearm, ammunition or major parts or pendency of a criminal case involving the firearm, ammunition or major parts thereof" as the nearest provision in Section 39 of RA 10591 that could prejudice the owner’s PTCFOR. The other nine provisions in Section 39 talk about loss of firearm, carrying firearm in prohibited place, falsified documents to obtain PTCFOR, court order, etc.
The lack of board hearing, lawyer Samson told me, was in Section 3. 24 of the law that says” FEO License Revocation and Restoration Board (FLRRB) – refers to the FEO board with a regulatory function to study, review, validate and recommend the correction, deletion, revocation, cancellation, suspension or restoration of all issued licenses, registrations and permits relative to firearms and explosives through a Resolution”.
IBP-Pangasinan to Question in Court PTCFOR's Suspension
Samson and Baby Ruth Torre, the Vice President of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines –Pangasinan Chapter, told me they would request the IBP-Pangasinan to question the actuation of the chief PNP in court.
Even former IBP-National president Feliciano Bautista said to me that those with PTCFOR should not suffer because Balolong was ambushed.
What the president and the obsequiousness of Purisima have done was torch the ground at the expense of the legitimate gun holders whose lives are endangered because of the naive president who failed to look at the bigger picture.
Ito isa pang hirit ko: This act was like killing a fly not with a fly zapper but with a sledge hammer.
(You can read my selected columns at http://mortzortigoza.blogspot.com and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too firstname.lastname@example.org).