Amid the “tanim-bala” incidents in the airport, the Episcopal Commission on Migrants and Itinerant People of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines has asked lawmakers to revisit the law that prohibits and penalizes the bringing out of the country such restricted items as bullets.
ECMI Chairman and Balanga Bishop Ruperto Santos was referring to Republic Act No. 10591 or the Comprehensive Firearms and Ammunition Regulation Act.
He said while the law may have the welfare and security of the country at heart, it had been exploited by those who have extortion in their hearts.
“It is said that people carry bullets in the belief that they are amulets that protect and heal. Can’t the authorities confiscate them in the same way as knives and nail cutters and then let the carriers go?” Santos said in a statement.
“Perhaps it is time for our lawmakers to revisit this law to make it clearer and more effective in warding off the real security threats to our country and not be used by criminal-minded people to prey on the innocent,” he added.
“Tanim-bala”, the prelate said is obviously a scam that is operated perhaps by an internal airport “syndicate” of security and lay personnel.
Santos said sadly the primary victims are the hardworking and unsuspecting overseas Filipino workers although tourists and foreigners have been victims as well.
While airport authorities seem to dismiss the tanim-bala as small incidents, he said this is a big thing to OFWs and also to the country’s reputation. (Leslie Aquino)