The online news portal of TV5
Two men in Lanao del Sur were spotted by a News5 team carrying firearms despite a gun ban imposed at the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) during the voters' registration in the entire region.
However, these men are neither policemen nor soldiers. They are part of families involved in a rido (clan war).
Both are members of clans who have chosen to carry firearms to protect themselves and their families from the possible eruption of clan wars in Lanao del Sur. The province which has the most number of rido cases, according to police authorities.
In an exclusive interview, "Bapa," not his real name, a clan leader, clarified that they are carrying firearms not to disrespect or rebel against the police authorities.
Bapa also added all the boys in their whole clan own a firearm. He clarified that all their guns are legal and supported with documents.
"Pinatay nila yung kapatid ko na walang kasalanan. [They killed my sibling for no reason]", Bapa said, explaining how his family got involved in a clan war.
Clan war is difficult to end
The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) admitted that putting an end to clan wars is a very hard and challenging task.
"We cannot solve this alone. We need the support of all district orders in the area of the community lalo na yung mga local government units.", Major General Rey Ardo, Commander of 6th Infantry Division, said.
However, the Philippine National Police (PNP) said that it is strictly enforcing implementing the gun ban.
"Hindi po hadlang yung rido sa pag-implement ng total gun ban. [Rido is not a hindrance in the total implementation of gun ban]," Chief Superintendent Mario Avenido, police chief of ARMM, said.
The gun ban is part of Oplan Rehistro to ensure a peaceful voters' re-registration in the entire ARMM. The registration period will run from July 9 to 18.