BALANGA City, Bataan: Some 38 inmates exchanged “I do’s” with their partners in a mass wedding held inside the Bataan provincial jail at the capitol compound here.
The covered court on one side of the big jail compound under the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology was abloom with flowers where smiling couples passed under a bedecked arc.
From the exchange of rings and pledges of love, the couples sealed pledged their troth with kisses after Balanga City Mayor Francis Garcia pronounced them husband and wife.
A 45-year old inmate married his widowed 71-year old partner of 12 years. He shared to The Manila Times that he was about to marry her earlier but was detained for a drug offense.
“I will go on loving you. I love you so much,” the inmate whispered to the woman who reciprocated the pledge.
Some inmates met their partners who were visiting relatives in jail. Some are both detained and fell in love while in detention.
An inmate said he was introduced to a woman visitor in 2010. “We met, we fell in love.”
“Our inmates need these free wedding ceremonies because they can’t afford the cost of getting married out of jail. I hope they love one another for life. A marriage contract is for life, it isn’t an ordinary contract,” Supt. Andrew Tauli, jail warden, said.
He said it was the second mass wedding in the history of the provincial jail.
There are 2,080 male and 260 female inmates at the Bataan jail.
ERNIE B. ESCONDE