50% of WV cops have no firearms
- Jennifer P. Rendon (The Philippine Star) - July 27, 2012 - 12:00am

ILOILO CITY, Philippines — Half of the entire police officers in Western Visayas do not have government-issued firearms, Chief Supt. Cipriano Querol Jr. confirmed yesterday.

Querol, director of the Police Regional Office-6, said that based on this year’s second quarter report, 4,462 of the 8,907 policemen in Western Visayas are without government-issued guns. “A good number of them have used their personal guns for their police duties,” he said.

Unarmed policemen could not fully carry out their duties and responsibility, said Querol. “They could not possibly fight it out with armed criminals.”

For now, those who have no guns are assigned to do office works. Others were deployed to man the traffic while a good number act as buddies to armed policemen on police visibility efforts, added the police official.

With President Benigno Aquino’s pronouncement during his state of the nation address (SONA), Querol however said he is confident that the lack of firearms would be solved soon.

In his SONA speech, Aquino said that 45 percent of the police forces in the country have no government-issued firearms. But the government had allocated a budget for the purchase of 74,600 guns, he said.

With this number, Querol said that almost all, if not all, gun-less police personnel would be armed. “But I also encouraged our field commanders to seek the help of the local government units and even non-government organizations to buffer the scarcity of logistics like weapons,” he said.

More than a month ago, Senator Franklin Drilon visited PRO-6 where he assured the policemen by saying: “Every year the PNP will have a budget for the recruitment program and I will make sure that Region 6 will get its fair share in the budget.”

The senator also vowed that “PRO-6 will get additional budget for the procurement of equipment like firearms and ammunitions to be issued to more than 1000 PNP personnel in Western Visayas who have no issued firearm.” - THE FREEMAN

AQUINO BUT I CHIEF SUPT CIPRIANO QUEROL JR. DRILON GOVERNMENT POLICE POLICE REGIONAL OFFICE QUEROL WESTERN VISAYAS WITH PRESIDENT BENIGNO AQUINO
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