Kin of Makati inmates denounce jail ‘torture’

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RELATIVES of inmates at the Makati City Jail on Monday denounced the alleged beating of detainees.

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Families of the inmates were finally allowed to visit four days after the holding of a noise barrage that killed one and injured 30 detainees.

The Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) opened the visitation on Sunday but only for the immediate families of the inmates.

Those who visited said the inmates, including the old and ailing, suffered wounds and bruises, believed obtained when jail guards stopped the noise barrage.

A video was recently released by a TV news program showing jail guards beating up inmates. BJMP spokesman Senior Inspector Xavier Solda, however, refused to identify the jail guards while the investigation is ongoing.

The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) has started investigating the jail riot, noting that 90 percent of the 522 inmates bore injuries, with “bruises from nightsticks, etc.”
Political detainees in Camp Bagong Diwa, Taguig City also slammed the “brutal suppression” of Makati inmates.

“We, political detainees at the Sica1 Jail, suffered much in sympathy as we saw on TV how the jail authorities continued to beat up the protesting inmates there, who then were already under control and were only squatting on the floor and entirely defenseless.

“Some were maimed and one of them even died because of the beatings,” said a joint statement of National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) peace consultants Adelberto Silva, Alan Jazmines, Ernesto Lorenzo, Ruben Saluta and Tirso Alcantara.

The Makati inmates reportedly held the noise barrage to protest the rampant trafficking of illegal drugs in the penitentiary and the poor quality of food being rationed to them.

“The anomalies being protested by the Makati City Jail inmates are not at all new to us.
We have long been raising the issue of proliferation of illegal drugs in jails and also the continuing transactions between big-time drug suppliers even in jails and their pushers outside unfettered by the iron bars of prison. We have also long been raising the issue of low budget allocation for food and very poor food rations in jails. The issue is practically a universal issue in all jails in the country,” the Taguig inmates said.

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