Duterte defends choice of ‘experienced’ Bantag as BuCor chief
MANILA, Philippines — President Rodrigo Duterte defended on Tuesday his decision to appoint former Manila City Jail warden Gerald Bantag as the new chief of Bureau of Corrections (BuCor), saying that he had the “experience” needed for the job.
He noted that Bantag served under the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology.
Malacañang announced Bantag’s appointment nearly two weeks after the President fired Nicanor Faeldon from the post in the wake of controversies on the release of heinous crimes convicts under the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) law.
READ: Duterte names ex-Manila City Jail warden as new BuCor boss
In 2017, Bantag was ordered arrested by the Parañaque City Regional Trial Court Branch 274 in connection with the 2016 explosion in the Parañaque City Jail that left 10 inmates dead — eight of them, including two Chinese nationals, facing drug charges.
But the President insisted that Bantag was innocent.
“Well, I think the case is in court, he’s facing homicide charges. I don’t think that he did it. If he did, then maybe he will be convicted. But in the meantime, I want him [for the post],” the President, speaking partly in Filipino, told reporters in an interview in Malacañang.
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