BJMP slammed for violating inmates’ rights in Camp Bagong Diwa blackout
Human rights groups on Wednesday criticized the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) for failing to address the week-long power outage at Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City.
The blackout has already resulted in a riot and the death of two inmates.
Reports said two inmates were killed while 17 were wounded because of a riot on Tuesday after members of two gangs clashed during a noise barrage to protest the lack of electricity.
Selda chairperson Marie Hilao-Enriquez said the Special Intensive Care Area (SICA) of Camp Bagong Diwa has not had electricity since May 30.
“The BJMP is violating the rights of the prisoners on purpose, by allowing this prolonged blackout which, in fact, can be easily addressed,” said Hustisya deputy secretary general Gloria Almonte.
Almonte is the wife of political prisoner Dionisio Almonte, one of the political prisoners at SICA 1.
“My husband had acquired tuberculosis while in detention, because of jail congestion. They cannot even use an electric fan for ventilation. His health has worsened, and his health will deteriorate further with this situation,” she said.
She said she is worried for her husband who also has eye cataract and suffer from high blood sugar.
There are supposedly 25 political prisoners in SICA 1, many of them are elderly and ailing, according to Almonte.
She said the “conditions inside jails do not in any way meet minimum standards on the treatment of prisoners.” She also pointed out that the detainees are not even convicted but are waiting for their cases to be resolved.
Hustisya cited the United Nations Minimum Standards on the Treatment of Prisoners, which requires the humane treatment of prisoners.
Almonte said jail management can prevent epidemics and heat stroke “but it depends on [their] decisiveness.”
Almonte told Inquirer that the BJMP and the Philippine National Police tend to point fingers at each other instead of swiftly solving the problem. JE
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