Roxas inspects detention center
MANILA, Philippines–Interior Secretary Mar Roxas has inspected the detention center at Camp Crame, headquarters of the Philippine National Police in Quezon City, where lawmakers facing plunder charges in connection with the pork barrel scam may be detained.
Along with some police officials, Roxas went to the PNP Custodial Center on Saturday morning after attending the weekly exercise program at the police camp.
A senior government official said Roxas was still in his jogging suit when he made the surprise visit at 8 a.m.
The source, who asked not to be identified for lack of authority to speak to the media, said Roxas stayed for about 20 minutes and briefly spoke with some of the detainees, including retired police generals who had been charged with graft cases.
“It was an unscheduled visit by Secretary Roxas. He just wanted to see the repairs being done at the detention center where some senators and congressmen might be held,” the official told the Inquirer.
He said Roxas was also told that the PNP was expecting at least 55 individuals charged in the alleged misuse of the multibillion-peso Priority Development Assistance Fund to be taken to the detention facility.
“Secretary Roxas was already briefed by the PNP before his visit to the Custodial Center last Saturday. He knows the condition of the possible detention cells for the lawmakers,” he said.
A police official earlier disclosed to the Inquirer that two detention bungalows inside the one-hectare compound were spruced up to accommodate Senators Juan Ponce Enrile, Jinggoy Estrada and Ramon Revilla Jr. and other high-profile detainees.
Another Camp Crame source on Monday said the PNP Headquarters Support Service, which has administrative supervision over the jail, had “renamed” the eight detention bungalows as part of its security preparations.
The source said the detention center for female detainees had been labeled “Alpha” while the bungalow holding government witnesses had been marked “Bravo.”
On the other hand, a duplex bungalow holding policemen implicated in the Atimonan, Quezon, rubout case and Maguindanao massacre was labeled “Charlie” and “Delta.”
A single-story building at the center’s maximum security compound had been named “Echo” while an adjacent structure had been called “Foxtrot.”
The buildings were previously known as “Alpha” and “Bravo,” respectively, the source said.
“The three senators are likely to be detained in ‘Echo’ since it was one of the two buildings that underwent renovation,” he said.
The source said two more buildings had been marked “Golf” and “Hotel.”
“A sheet of bond paper printed with the letters A to G had been posted outside the buildings,” he said.
The source said Echo had eight individual detention cells, each measuring about 10 square meters. The building’s walls had been repainted with a fresh coat of gray and yellow paint, he said. “The renovations are almost done in Foxtrot. It will be ready in the next few days,” he said.