ILOILO CITY — The 6th Forward Service Support Unit (6FSSU) of the Philippine Army’s 3rd Infantry Division (3ID) destroyed 24 captured, confiscated, surrendered, and recovered firearms in Camp Delgado here on Tuesday.
Lt. Col. Imelda Nadala, commanding officer of 6FSSU, said the 24 firearms were approved for “demilitarization” upon the review and discussion of the captured, confiscated, surrendered, and recovered disposal committee of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).
“When we say demilitarization, we destroy or disrupt the firearms in order to render (them) useless to prevent (them from) ending up on the hands of the enemy again,” Nadala said in a media interview.
The demilitarized firearms consisted of 12 twelve-gauge shotguns; five rifles; three pistols; two .45-caliber pistols; one M16 rifle upper receiver; and one GL 40mm. Based on the Army’s record, 22 of the destroyed firearms were unserviceable and two were serviceable.
Nadala said the firearms were turned over to the 6FSSU by the Army’s 3ID’s brigades and battalions in Negros Occidental and Panay islands.
Aside from the 24 demilitarized firearms, the 6FSSU also presented to the media 10 other firearms classified under the military assistance program (MAP).
“These are MAP items that we will turn over to the general headquarters for proper disposition,” Nadala said.
The MAP items under the 6FFSU consisted of five 5.56mm rifles; two Garand rifle upper receivers; two 5.56mm-caliber rifles; and one 30-caliber rifle. Eight of these items were unserviceable and two were serviceable.
Nadala said 10 other firearms are subject to macro etching at the Philippine National Police Crime Laboratory to determine the original serial numbers and verify their ownership.
“These firearms under the 6FSSU (had been) accumulated since 2016,” he said.
Capt. Cenon Pancito III, spokesperson of the 3ID, meanwhile, said the destruction of the firearms is done based on coordination with and request from the 6FSSU.
“With our coordination with the FSSU, it (firearms) adds up in number, (so) we have to demilitarize these items. It is also to free up our storage and at the same time (to eliminate) the possibility for these to be on the hands of the enemies,” Pancito said.
Aside from the 6FSSU, other demilitarization processes were also done by the 3ID.
In September last year, 315 long and short firearms from the Western and Central Visayas were also demilitarized by the 3ID in Camp Peralta in Jamindan, Capiz. (PNA)