KUTA SANG-AN, Labangan, Zamboanga del Sur – Through the collaboration of Joint Task Force “Ranao” and municipal officias of the different towns of Lanao del Sur, another one hundred six (106) assorted loose firearms were turned-over by the local folks of the Province in 9 days from April 29 to May 07, 2018.
Attending the activity were officials of the respective municipalities and barangays, Provincial and municipal police, and officers of the 103rd Brigade under JTF “Ranao” led by the Commanding Officer, Col Generoso M Ponio.
On April 29, 3 municipalities simultaneously turned-over the loose firearms. The municipalities of Masiu, Mulondo, and Dit-saan Ramin turned-over a total of fourty two (42) assorted high-powered and fourteen (14) assorted low-powered firearems.
On May 02, municipality of Taraca turned-over twenty (20) assorted high-powered and three (3) assorted low-powered firearms.
On May 04, municipality of Marantao turned-over two (2) high-powered and one (1) low-powered firearms.
On May 07, municipality of Butig turned-over six (6) assorted high-powered and seven (7) assorted low-powered firearms. This same day, municipality of Bubong also turned-over eleven (11) assorted high-powered firearms.
The municipal mayors led the turn-over of firearms from their respective municipalities which is a clear sign that they are fully embracing the AFP campaign against loose firearms to help attain peace in the Province of Lanao del Sur.
After the inventory, a total of one hundred six (106) assorted firearms were turned-over in LDS broken down into eighty one (81) assorted high-powered and twenty five (25) assorted low-powered firearms.
The respective Mayors deeply expressed their gratitude for the full cooperation of the local officials especially the Brgy Captains and also to their constituents for their positive response to the campaign against loose firearms. “Firearms have become cultural and status symbols for the protection of families, especially those involved in clan wars”, they added.
Col Ponio, Commanding Officer of 103rd Brigade, said: “I have always emphasized that the collected firearms is the result of cooperation, coordination, and teamwork for nine (9) days” and we expect other stakeholders especially the civilians to be more supportive in this campaign.
The continuous turn-over of loose firearms in LDS is a clear indication that the civilian populace greatly acknowledged the importance of resolving conflicts through diplomatic means and not through violence which is very counter-productive”, said Major General Roseller G Murillo, Commander, 1ST Infantry Division and concurrent Commander of JTF “ZamPeLan”.
As the Brgy and SK election is fast approaching, this will surely lessen any terroristic acts and election-related violent incidents that may hamper the peaceful exercise of the people’s right to suffrage, he added.
Turned-over loose firearms are now at the respective municipal police stations for safekeeping and proper disposition.