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BJMP not fit for pregnant women, says spokesman

/ 07:35 PM August 08, 2014

MANILA, Philippines–The Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) isn’t fit for pregnant women, a spokesman for the facility said Friday.

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“Well, the BJMP facility is really not fit for pregnant women. But we are giving them the most comfortable accommodation and we send them to nearby government hospital if necessary,” Aris Villaester told reporters at the Sandiganbayan.

The human-rights group Karapatan-Southern Tagalog (Karapatan-ST) assailed the BJMP for not acting on the condition of Maria Torres, a female inmate who is four months pregnant and is suspected of being a member of the New People’s Army (NPA).

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Karapatan-ST said when she was arrested, Torres was very sick. She was suffering from heavy bleeding, low placenta, was anemic and with urinary tract infection—the reasons why the [Armed Forces] Southern Luzon Command [Solcom] and the [National Police] Criminal Investigation and Detection Group brought her to the Camp [Gen. Guillermo] Nakar Station hospital.

Insp. Aris Villaester. NOY MORCOSO III/INQUIRER.net

On June 25, however, Torres was transferred to the Female Dormitory at Taguig City Jail and not in a hospital.

It was only on July 1 that the court ordered Torres’ transfer to the Philippine General Hospital but instead, the BJMP took her to the Taguig-Pateros District Hospital.

Villaester said pregnant inmates were taken to the fourth floor isolation so she was isolated from other inmates.

The group fears that Torres will suffer the same fate as that of Andrea Rosal, the daughter of NPA leader Gregorio “Ka Roger” Rosal, who had a miscarriage while in detention because of poor health care.
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TAGS: BJMP, Bureau of Jail Management and Penology, Human rights, Karapatan-ST, Maria Torres, NPA, pregnant women, Prison
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