Acting on the urgent orders of Deputy Director General Leonardo Espina to simplify the processing of gun license, the Firearms and Explosives Office of the Philippine National Police will soon make the application for licenses online.

By the end of 2015, the FEO plans to make the processing of gun licenses faster by making the application available on the Internet — just like applying for a passport.

Espina earlier directed the FEO to simplify the application process for the license to own and possess firearms (LTOPF) and permit to carry firearms outside residence (PTCFOR) to address complaints of gun owners that license requirements are “redundant and excessive.”

Senior Superintendent Dennis Siervo, newly appointed FEO head, hopes that within this month, the FEO could present the proposed amendments to the PNP leadership, then to Interior Secretary Mar Roxas.

“I’m thinking about reinventing, not just reengineering the processing. So before the year ends, I tell you, this month, FEO will be online,” he said in a press briefing at Camp Crame on Monday.

With the new process, Siervo said that applicants would save time. It will also save parking spaces in Camp Crame, which are usually full at daytime.

“If you papers are valid, you will be directed to pay through banks or credit card. The system will generate when you will be scheduled to report to FEO on this particular day and hour just like how the DFA is processing passports,” he said.

In a day, Siervo said the FEO attends to 250 to 300 LTOPF applicants.

“What I envision is that when the gun owners will be asked to report to the FEO after applying online, they will have to wait for 15 to 20 minutes only,” he added.

What if the FEO’s online system gets hacked? Siervo said they would require the IT company that would win in the bidding to have the capability to immediately address web hacking incidents.

“The winning bidder should have a disaster recovery plan and a business continuity plan in case our system gets hacked,” he said.

Part of the decentralization of gun licensing is the establishment of satellite offices outside Crame, according to Civil Security Group deputy director Chief Superintendent Elmer Soria.

“It’s like a mini FEO. Kung anong ginagawa sa main (office), iyon din ang ginagawa sa satellite office. Makukuha rin doon ang LTOPF if their requirements are complete,” Soria said.

The FEO has put up satellite offices in Marikina and Davao. It will soon open offices in Cebu.

“So it’s actually there, decentralization. The presence of FEO in the regions,” he added.

(image credit: darc-ph.com)