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Tuesday, February 27, 2024

AFAD’s Sporting Arms Show: Fusion of sports, advocacy, policy

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THE 29th Defense and Sporting Arms Show, with its second edition to be launched from December 7 to 11 at SMX Mall of Asia, and organized by the Association of Firearms and Ammunition Dealers, Inc., is not merely an exposition of firearms but a strategic step towards transforming the annual gathering into a true sporting event.

AFAD President Aric Topacio shared his vision, saying, “It is time to make our annual event into something else. Very soon, beginning this year, we shall be known not just as individual gun enthusiasts but a unified industry.”

As the country’s longest-running sporting arms show, the event will showcase a diverse array of top-of-the-line local and imported firearms, optics, sporting goods, and accessories. Gun enthusiasts, hobbyists, and sportsmen are all invited to partake in this immersive experience.

What sets this edition apart is AFAD’s dual role, not only as a catalyst for showcasing the latest in firearms, but also as a significant player in shaping policy and promoting responsible gun ownership.

AFAD aims to influence the narrative surrounding firearms, elevating it from a mere trade show to a forum for discussing policies that impact the industry.

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“Despite the current gun ban due to the barangay elections, our athletes remain active in competition. AFAD stands ready to assist them, securing special permits when needed,” said Topacio, emphasizing AFAD’s commitment to navigating the regulatory landscape.

The show opens at 10 a.m. with Senator Ronald ‘Bato’ Dela Rosa, an advocate for responsible gun ownership and sports shooting, leading distinguished guests, including the top brass from both the Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines and agencies concerned.

One distinctive aspect of AFAD’s role is its active participation in policy advocacy.

The organization seeks to be a voice in developing regulations and policies that govern the firearms industry. By engaging with policymakers, AFAD aims to contribute to creating a regulatory framework that balances public safety concerns with the rights of responsible gun owners.

AFAD’s proactive stance in policymaking is not just a commitment to the industry but an acknowledgment of its responsibility to society. AFAD aims to reshape public perception and contribute positively to the discourse on responsible gun ownership by fostering an environment where the sportsmanship aspect of firearms ownership is highlighted.

As the show anticipates robust participation from local and international gun enthusiasts, AFAD’s role takes center stage, bridging the worlds of sport, advocacy, and policy.

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