Dismissed BuCor chief a no-show at Senate’s GCTA probe
MANILA, Philippines – Sacked Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) chief Director General Nicanor Faeldon, did not show up Thursday morning at the Senate’s ongoing probe on the early release of prisoners based on good conduct.
“I was told just this morning that nakikiusap yung abugado ni Mr. Faeldon kung maaari, di daw siya dadalo,” Senator Richard Gordon, chairman of the Senate Justice and Human Rights Committee, said before the hearing.
While Faeldon is under subpoena, Gordon said the sacked BuCor chief would not be sanctioned.
“Tinanong ko yung mga kapwa ko senador kung maaring di na siya (Faeldon) darating. Importante na makarating siya pero ang present attitude namin is to be magnanimous at the mean time unless there are other information that may come out that we will require his presence once again,” Gordon said.
“So we will be reserving that right now. Although he has a subpoena we will not put him under any sanctions,” he added.
On Wednesday, President Rodrigo Duterte fired Faeldon amid the raging controversy surrounding the release of nearly 2,000 heinous crime convicts based on the good conduct time allowance (GCTA) law.
The President also said he would want other BuCor officials to be placed under investigation by the Office of the Ombudsman.
Leading up to the former Marine captain’s dismissal were succeeding inquiries on the implementation of Republic Act 10592 on the GCTA where allegations of corruption through the “GCTA for sale” scheme surfaced.
Senator Risa Hontiveros, in one of the hearings, claimed that freedom under the GCTA law is being sold to powerful and influential inmates.
Bolstering such allegations, Senate President Vicente Sotto III said inmates serving their sentence in the National Bilibid Prison may have to pay millions to be released, citing “A1 information” from “prison insiders.”
“We have intelligence reports already that I already shared with Senator [Panfilo] Lacson, so in the hearings tomorrow, we will see if we have to uncover them or not,” Sotto told reporters then.
The Senate hearings were triggered by the aborted release of rape and murder convict and former Calauan, Laguna Mayor Antonio Sanchez, who was sentenced to seven life imprisonments for the murder and rape of University of the Philippines-Los Baños student Eileen Sarmenta and the killing of her schoolmate Allan Gomez in 1993. /gsg
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