The confiscation and recovery of 80 assorted firearms in various provinces helped in the significant decrease in the number of shooting incidents during and after the May 13 elections in the Cordillera.
Cordillera police Information Officer Davy Limmong reported Thursday that of the 80 firearms, 73 were confiscated in line with the implementation of the election gun ban.
Limmong said 96 persons were also arrested during the gun ban and 77 cases for violation of the Comelec gun ban were filed in various courts.
He said 39 were confiscated in Abra, 13 in Apayao, eight in Baguio City, seven in Benguet, four in Ifugao, six in Kalinga, and three in Mountain Province.
The election gun ban took effect on Jan. 13 until June 12.
Limmong added Cordillera Police Director Benjamin Magalong informed the Philippine National Police headquarters that only one private armed group (PAG) with five members exists in the region.
Magalong reported to Camp Crame the command neutralized five PAGs with 113 members prior to the midterm elections.
The Cordillera command attributed the reduction of the number of firearms circulating in the region during election, to the surrender of high-powered firearms by politicians in Abra and Kalinga.
The high turn-out of firearms which were confiscated, surrendered, and sealed that reduced the firearms circulating in the region is a big factor in the decline of shooting incidents.
Almost 400 high and low-powered firearms are in custody of the PRO-Cor, which will be returned to the owners once the PNP and Comelec declare the region is safe from election-related violence.
Majority of the politicians who surrendered high-powered firearms are from Abra following several talks between the PRO-Cor, politicians, and their supporters.
Among those who deposited firearms were Abra Gov. Eustaquio Bersamin, former Abra representative Cecilia Luna, and her son, Bangued Mayor Ryan.
Those who were deployed to various provinces have already returned to Camp Dangwa and were given a heroes’ welcome on Thursday.
Some 3,744 police and military personnel were deployed for election duties in 1,370 polling places in the whole region.