Plunder complaint filed vs BJMP execs over alleged funds misuse
A plunder complaint has been filed against ranking officials—including the chief—of the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) for the alleged misuse of inmate food allowances worth at least P50 million from 2012 to 2014.
Jail Insp. Angelina Lumba Bautista said that the reported abuses occurred during the “transition period” in which provincial jails were turned over to the BJMP.
The BJMP has been active in taking over the management of provincial jails in its bid for a more uniform system of correctional facilities in the country.
The scheme allegedly utilized by senior BJMP officials consisted of entering into a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with the local government unit (LGU) where the jail was based, in which the LGU covered the expenses for the inmates’ subsistence allowance and utilities for the duration of the transition period.
Bautista said that despite the LGU covering the costs of said allowances and utilities, the BJMP would still allocate funds for the expenses supposedly covered by the LGU, which in turn effectively doubled the food budget.
“I was surprised at the documents that I was tasked to handle because while the provincial government released the necessary funds for the inmates’ subsistence allowance, the BJMP was also allocating funds for the same purpose,” she said.
Bautista claimed that this subsequent increase of funding was preyed upon by BJMP officials.
“I give the example of the Bataan District Jail because I had firsthand experience of its operations,” Bautista said.
The BJMP and local government of Bataan entered into a MOA in which the LGU paid for the utilities and the food allowance for the jail.
She claimed that BJMP officials were able to amass as much as P10 million in ill-gotten gains within just two quarters from the Bataan District Jail alone.
The MOA had been in effect for the duration of the three-year transition period, from 2010 to 2013. At least P50 million in public funds were misused throughout the entirety of the scheme for the Bataan District Jail alone, according to the affidavit.
Bautista accused the following of committing plunder: BJMP Director Diony Mamaril, Chief Supt. Alfredo Daupan Soliba, chief budget officer Mila Comia, Senior Supt. Arnulfo Obias, Senior Insp. Lorna Capili and Insp. Gilbert Marpuri Jr.
Also accused are the former BJMP disbursing officers, budget officers and accountants for the BJMP3 spanning three years from August 2010 to August 2013.
Before she filed the complaint to the Ombudsman, Inspector Bautista also sought the help of the Senate blue ribbon committee, contacting the offices of Sen. Teofisto “TG” Guingona Jr.
In her letter to the Senate, Bautista warned that the practice was not restricted to the Bataan Provincial Jail alone.
The letter mentioned that the BJMP had already entered into similar MOAs with the provinces of Bohol, Iloilo, Albay and Quezon. RC
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