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PIA Press Release
2009/06/18

PNP plans to put up gun-free tourist areas

by Rey Anthony Chiu

Tagbilaran City (18 June) -- Packing more come-ons for Bohol as super-regions' hot tourist destination, police regional office 7 (PRO 7) now dreams of converting Bohol tourist areas into ultimate gun-free zones.

When realized, it should further elevate Bohol as destination status into a distinct wholesome family destination, shares PSSupt. Louie Oppus.

The Boholano police officer showed mayors graphs showing going down of the crime trend in the Central Visayas in the last 5 years, and was quick to add that the success is due largely to the efforts of mayors.

The achievement however seems not enough for Col. Oppus who hinted that crime presence in a tourism destination is still not good.

The Camp Sergio Osmena-based police operations officer then told mayors gathered during the League of Municipalities of the Philippines (LMP) Bohol Chapter meeting in Inabanga recently of the plan wich means zero tolerability for guns in designated areas.

Briefing mayors on the peace and order situation here, Col. Oppus, who spoke for Police Regional Director Lane-o Neres added that the overall peace and order showing for Bohol is very appealing as he points out crimes going down as against the last three ratings.

On the proposed plan, if pushed, peacekeeping authorities would deny entry or armed bodyguards of public officials and escorts of very important persons.

"Only police officers in uniform are allowed to carry firearms in designated tourist areas," he said as he elucidated on the plan to convert areas into safe zones.

Once converted, even persons with permits to carry fire-arms outside residence should deposit their firearms at the tourist police desks or they would be denied entry, he added.

The police official also pointed out that most crimes here involve some good number of unaccounted loose firearms, one that must be addressed as fast.

Finding a good entry, Col. Oppus asked local chief executive's help in rocovering loose firearms and lead in registering these cases. (PIA) [top]

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