No more gun-less PRO-6 cops

By Jennifer P. Rendon

The problem of lack of firearms for police officers from more than a decade ago has long been resolved.

The Police Regional Office (PRO) 6 said that a 1:1 ratio of policeman-to-firearm proportion has long been practiced in the police force.

Colonel Rhea Santos, PRO-6 Regional Logistics Division, said that only policemen undergoing Basic Internal Security Operation Course (BISOC) training are scheduled to be armed.

But Santos said procurement of firearms for newly-recruit policemen is a program that is continually being undertaken by the organization.

“Hopefully, they would be issued with a firearm immediately after their training,” she said.

It was gathered that there were more than 500 newly-recruit police who underwent training two months ago.

The PRO-6 armaments capability came to light after the PNP national headquarters gave the regional command 1,200 firearms during the visit of PNP chief General Rodolfo Azurin Jr., at the PRO-6 headquarters more than a week ago.

These firearms are composed of 750 units of Galil ACE 22N rifles, 250 M16 assault rifles, and 200 caliber .9mm Girsan pistols.

Major Mary Grace Borio, PRO-6 spokesperson, said that the high-power firearms were given to mobile forces units and police stations in insurgency-affected areas.

The handguns, on the other hand, were given to rookie policemen.

Meanwhile, Brigadier General Leo Francisco, Western Visayas police chief, said he would also check the mobility assets of the different police stations and units in the region.

With enough mobility assets, he said that policemen could better respond to assistance and emergencies.