Senate Passes Stricter Gun Laws

Manila Bulletin, February 5, 2013 | Go to article overview

Senate Passes Stricter Gun Laws


MANILA, Philippines - The Senate has approved on third and final reading the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act (Senate Bill No. 3397) which seeks to help law enforcement agencies address the proliferation of illegal firearms.

The bill specifically seeks to repeal sections of Presidential Decree 1866, a section of Republic Act 8294, and other laws, executive orders, letters of instruction, issuances, circulars, administrative orders, rules or regulations concerning firearms and ammunition.

Under the bill, those who can apply and obtain a license to own and possess firearms must be a Filipino citizen; 21 years old; has gainful work, occupation or business; and has filed an income tax return (ITR) for the preceding year as proof of income.

Apart from that, an applicant is required to pass a psychiatric test and drug test administered by the Philippine National Police (PNP) accredited psychologist or psychiatrist.

An applicant must also have not been convicted of any crime involving moral turpitude and is also required to pass a gun safety seminar.

He or she is also required to state his or her personal circumstances in writing, present a police clearance from the city or municipal police office and has not been convicted or is currently an accused in a pending criminal case before any court of law for a crime that is punishable with penalty of more than two (2) years.

The bill also provides that a juridical person maintaining its own security forces may be issued a regular license to own and possess firearms and ammunitions under the following conditions: it must be Filipino-owned and duly registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission; it is current, operational and a continuing concern; it has completed and submitted all its reportorial requirement to SEC; and it has paid all its income taxes for the year, as duly certified by the Bureau of Internal Revenue.

The bill also provides that a permit to carry firearms outside of residence shall be issued by the Chief, PNP, or his duly authorized representative to any qualified person whose life is under actual threat or their lives are in imminent danger due to the nature of their profession, occupation or business.

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