Sotto: NBP escape stresses need for separate facility for heinous crime convicts
MANILA, Philippines — The recent escape of four inmates from the New Bilibid Prison’s (NBP) Maximum Security Compound bolsters the need to establish a separate facility dedicated to those convicted of heinous crimes, Senate President Vicente Sotto III said Tuesday.
Sotto said the inmates could not have escaped if they had been locked up within the proposed facility for heinous crime convicts that has better security systems.
“It bolsters the need for that. Kailangan talaga ihiwalay natin yung mga heinous criminals from the community of PDLs (persons deprived of liberty),” Sotto told reporters.
(We really need to separate heinous criminals from the community of PDLs.)
“If we create this separate faciltiy that I have envisioned for a long time already, eh hindi mangyayari ‘yan. Hindi sila makakatakas dun. No cellsite, no signal, no nothing,” he added.
(If we create this separate facility that I have envisioned for a long time already, this won’t happen. They won’t be able to escape because there is no cell site, no signal, no nothing.)
Sotto said the proposed separate facility for heinous crime convicts had been approved by both the Senate and the House of Representatives. It, however, remains pending in the bicameral conference committee.
The Senate President likewise raised the need to regionalize penal colonies. He said inmates lose their way when their families do not visit them. The establishment of penal colonies in Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao so that prisoners can be near their families is also part of this plan.
“Papano dadalawin sa Muntinlupa NBP yung mga taga Sultan Kudarat, o taga Surigao, o taga Ilocos, taga Negros? Baka ni once a month, once a year, hindi makabisita,” Sotto said.
(How can those from areas like Sultan Kudarat or Surigao or Ilocos or Negros visit? Maybe they won’t be able to, even if it’s just once a month or once a year.)
Once the NBP is regionalized, Sotto said the NBP land in Muntinlupa City can be converted into a “university belt.”
“The important thing is that there are hundreds of hectares being occupied by the NBP, government-owned na pakikinabangan ng tao, ng gobyerno. Trilyon ang halaga nung area na ‘yun,” Sotto said.
(The important thing is that hundreds of hectares are occupied by the NBP. This is government-owned that the public will benefit from. That areas is worth trillions.)
“Puwedeng i-convert ‘yun into a university belt (That can be converted into a university belt). Imagine the growth corridor that we will be creating there, instead of housing the inmates there?” he added.