Abalos: No special treatment for newly elected inmates | Inquirer News

Abalos: No special treatment for newly elected inmates

/ 12:03 PM November 01, 2023

DILG Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. at the Kapihan sa Manila Bay forum held Wednesday, November 1, 2023

DILG Secretary Benjamin Abalos Jr. (L) at the Kapihan sa Manila Bay forum held Wednesday, November 1, 2023. | PHOTO: Official facebook page of Kapihan sa Manila Bay

MANILA, Philippines — Persons deprived of liberty (PDLs) who won in the 2023 Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan Elections (BSKE) will not be given any form of preferential treatment, said Interior and Local Government chief Benjamin Abalos Jr.

In a Kapihan sa Manila Bay forum on Wednesday, Abalos said existing policies in Philippine jails wouldn’t be sacrificed just because constituents chose to elect PDLs.


“Ganito lang ‘yan. There will be no special treatments. Kung nakakulong ka e ‘di naman porke’t nanalo kang Kapitan ay 24 hours kang nasa telepono. May cell phone kang sarili? E hindi pu-pwede ‘yon,” said Abalos.


(It’s just like this. There will be no special treatments. If you’re in jail, just because you won as a Barangay Captain, it doesn’t mean that you’ll be on the phone 24 hours a day. Will you have your own cell phone? That can’t be done.)

“Kung ano ang panukalang meron tayo sa kulungan ay susundin pa rin natin ‘yun. Well ‘yun ang pinili ng constituents [nila], pero we must also not sacrifice these policies of the government,” he added.

(Whatever measures we have in the prison, we will still follow it. Well, that’s what their constituents have chosen, but we must also not sacrifice these government policies.)

Data from the Commission on Elections (Comelec) showed that three barangays in the country have winning PDL candidates. These villages are as follows:

  • Barangay Kay Buto in Tanay, Rizal (Sugar Rey C. Iposada, Barangay Kagawad)
  • Barangay Datu Esmael in Dasmariñas, Cavite (undisclosed PDL, Barangay Kagawad)
  • Barangay Ipunan in Cagayan de Oro City (Redeem Dabilo, Barangay Kagawad)

Abalos said there will only be succession if the PDLs are convicted.

“It’s very unique dahil ngayon lang nangyari ito. Kakaiba ito. Maski ako nagulat. Magaling ang asawa nito o magaling ang pamilya nito. Matindi ang campaign manager,” said Abalos in jest.


(It’s very unique because it’s the first time that this has happened. It’s strange. Even I was surprised. His wife is good or his family is good [in campaigning]. The campaign manager is commendable.)

Abalos said they still have to discuss with the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology the measures to be implemented so these individuals can “effectively govern” and fulfill their sworn duties.

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But repeating that this was the first time, Abalos said it might be the offshoot of a 2022 Supreme Court decision recognizing the rights of PDLs that ignited this change.


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TAGS: Benhur Abalos, DILG, PDLs

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