187 firearms turned over in Sulu Print
Thursday, 08 March 2018 13:41

Seven (7) Municipalities of Sulu, through its municipal and barangay officials, handed-over 187 firearms in a ceremony officiated by the Western Mindanao Command Chief last Tuesday.

Municipal and barangay officials from Talipao, Parang, Omar, Indanan, Maimbung, Jolo, and Patikul, Sulu turned over nine M14 rifles, three 30 Caliber BAR rifles, nine M79 Grenade Launchers, sixty-four M16 rifles, three ARI5 rifles, ninety-three M1 Garand rifles, four M203 Grenade Launchers, and two Caliber 45 pistol.

“On behalf of the men and women of the WestMinCom, I would like to express my gratitude to all the municipal mayors and the representatives for handing over 187 firearms today. You know this is a record that we were able to have this much firearms in one day only. We know that the firearms are very important to the Muslims, but now they are surrendering these for peace,” said Westmincom Chief Lt. Gen. Carlito Galvez, Jr.

Talipao Mayor Nebukadnezar Tulawie surrendered 60 high and low-powered firearms, consisting of 41 M16 rifles, three ARIS rifles, twelve M1 Garand rifles, two M79 Grenade Launchers, one Bar, and one M14 rifle.

Parang Mayor Madzfar Loong and Omar Mayor Jusshin Muhammad yielded 63 high and low-powered firearms composed of a 30 caliber rifle, twelve M16 rifles, forty M1 Garand rifles, six M79 and one M203 Grenade Launchers, and three M14 rifles.

aimbung Acting Vice Mayor Alliman Tan turned over 20 firearms composed of a 30 Caliber rifle, five M16 rifles, six M1 Garand rifles, two M203 Grenade Launchers, four M14 rifles, and two Caliber 45 pistols.

Busbus, Jolo Barangay Captain Rigduan Lindog also yielded 20 firearms consisting of four M16 rifles, fourteen M1 Garand rifles, an M203 Grenade Launcher, and an M14 rifle.

Indanan Mayor Hermont Jikiri and Vice Mayor Allan Jainal surrendered 24 firearms composed of two M16 rifles, twenty-one M1 Garand rifles, and an M79 Grenade Launcher.

The ceremonial turnover of firearms was held at Kuta Teodulfo Bautista Gymnasium from 10am to 11:30am.

Brigadier General Cirilito Sobejana, Commander of Joint Task Force Sulu, thanked and congratulated the chief executives of Sulu municipalities for supporting their efforts to eradicate loose firearms, saying that “the President’s directive to return firearms that are sources of war is a good approach towards a gun- free and peaceful province.”

“Today is a start of our journey towards making Sulu free from firearms since 187 are turned over to us by local officials,” he added.

From January 1 to March 6, 2018, a total of 616 loose firearms were recovered by the Joint Task Forces under the WestMinCom. Of this record, a total of 126 firearms were recovered and surrendered in Central Mindanao, 30 in ZamPeLan, 221 in Zamboanga City, and 239 in Sulu.

“On behalf of the officers and men of the WestMinCom, I would like to thank our President for the clear direction and the support for the soldiers. We would also like to thank the mayors for giving up something significant to them in exchange for peace and prosperity. I know that these firearms are very important to Muslims, but for the sake of peace, they are surrendering all of these,” said Lt. Gen Galvez.

“I am grateful that they fully support the President and they trust the AFP, by doing this very humble gesture.”

The 187 firearms and crew serve weapons were transported to Zamboanga City by Philippine Airforce C130 plane for inventory and assessment at WestMinCom headquarters.

“We will check if there are firearms that are from the military’s inventory, after that assessment will be conducted as to the serviceability. It is only then that we make recommendations for the possible demilitarization of these FAs,” added the WestMinCom Chief. (Westmincom PR)