Transfer of NBP inmates to penal farms must have DOJ approval first—De Lima
MANILA, Philippines—Justice Secretary Leila de Lima on Monday ordered the Bureau of Corrections to first seek approval from her office before transferring inmates of the New Bilibid Prison to the penal farms.
In a department circular, De Lima noted that the Department of Justice has been receiving several complaints about the purported “unreasonable or arbitrary transfers” of NBP prisoners to penal colonies being maintained by the BuCor in far-flung provinces.
According to the justice secretary, some of the inmates were brought to the penal farms “as a way of getting rid of them to pave the way for the unhampered underground … activities” of drug syndicates.
“In view of the foregoing, all transfers of inmates to any of the penal colonies/penal farms shall henceforth bear the prior approval of the secretary of justice,” De Lima said in her order.
In an interview with reporters, De Lima said Malacañang has asked her to submit “concrete proposals” to solve the jail congestion at the state penitentiary.
“I will meet with officials of BuCor to address the jail congestion because I’m being asked by the Palace to submit specific or concrete proposals … including budgetary requirements,” De Lima said.