A grayscale photograph of a line of military personnel standing next to armored vehicles. The soldier in the foreground, wearing a camouflaged uniform and helmet, holds a communication device. Behind him, rows of soldiers stand at attention, and multiple military vehicles are parked, all under a partly cloudy sky.

Ready To Own A Gun? PMC Troops Registers At LTOPF Caravan

Sunday, October 30, 2022 12:00 AM
Group of Marine Corps huddled around registration table

Security is an utmost priority during every celebration, that is why the Philippine Marine Corps together with Civil Security Groups (CSG), PNP held a two-day License to Own and Possess Firearms (LTOPF) Caravan and Firearms License Renewal Application at the Marine Corps Headquarters last October 27 and 28 as part of its numerous pre-anniversary activities.

More than a hundred applicants attended the LTOPF Caravan. It is open for the civilians, military personnel, their dependents and family members who wish to obtain and renew their firearms licenses for personal and self-defense purposes.

Owning a license for firearms is similar to acquiring a driver’s license. However, rather than applying online and traveling through various offices and medical institutions for examinations, those who attended the LTOPF Caravan became a convenient one-stop-shop for the attendees.

Though, new applicants have a different set of requirements than those who applied for a renewal. For starters, the new applicants need to be a Filipino citizen and at least 21 years old. They should have a notarized LTOPF application form, conduct a series of neuro-drug tests, provide proof of income, and complete a gun safety seminar before granting a license.

The step-by-step procedure in the LTOPF Firearms Registration is as follows:

  1. Type FEO Services on Google and click on the link
  2. Create LTOPF Online Account
  3. Sign in with your email address and password
  4. Attach your photo and fill out the required data
  5. Click “Select Service” (New or Renewal)
  6. Enter your information and then click “Proceed”
  7. Upload the scanned or captured photo of the documents
  8. A confirmation text of the payment process will be sent once the application is approved
  9. Pay the required fees, then log-in to your account and upload the receipt thru Landbank
  10. Set an appointment for submission of original documents to RCSU/FEO
  11. Once documents are evaluated, wait for the printed certificate

Unlike filling out a new application process, renewal of LTOPF is less time-consuming and cumbersome as these requirements are much simpler. Part of the list includes National Police Clearance, Neuro-Drug Receipt, and Notarized LTOPF Application Form all submitted in a long brown envelope.

In the Philippines, Filipinos owned an estimated 3.9 million firearms both legally and illicitly. There are reported to be around 300 thousand licensed gun owners including collectors and private firms.

When the country was colonized by the Americans, private citizens were allowed to acquire high-powered firearms for “lawful uses,” like hunting. However, owners were only allowed to have one low-powered rifle and one permitted handgun or revolver when Ferdinand Marcos imposed martial law in 1972. In contrast, President Joseph Estrada removed restrictions on gun ownership in 2000, allowing Filipinos to legally own firearms and as many as they wished.

Legislators established rules for who can legally buy and carry firearms in public. According to Section 10 of RA 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act, licensed citizens and juridical entities may own, possess, and concealed carry small arms such as handguns, rifles, and shotguns.

After much ease with firearms possession, those professions that pose an imminent risk, wealthy citizens who have an interest in gun collection, participants of sports shooting competitions, retired military personnel, government employees, and civilians are allowed to purchase personal guns but must meet certain criteria before doing so.

Most licensees are authorized up to a total of 15 firearms (while some collectors are allowed more than 15). The license has a 10-year validity period when the applicants opt for an Affidavit of Undertaking in the LTOPF Caravan.

The government has extended privilege to its people by allowing them to bear firearms. Gun enthusiasts should be responsible for the proper handling of weapons and abide by the implemented rules and regulations of the law.

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