QC jail to have fewer inmates by yearend


Inmates at the packed Quezon City Jail will have more space to move around at the end of the year when the population will be reduced by 800.

RIOT AFTERMATH Inmates at the Quezon City Jail sit outside as jail personnel search their cells for hidden weapons and contraband two days after a riot that killed one inmate and wounded several others. PHOTO BY ROGER RAÑADA

Jail Warden Supt. Ermilito Moral said about 700 to 800 inmates will regain their freedom based on the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA), a credit scheme that allows authorities to commute the sentences of inmates with good behavior.

The jail has been on the spotlight because it is so congested that some inmates sleep by turns. The facility was built to house 800 people but at present, it is crammed with more than 3,000 inmates.

The departure of at least 700 inmates by the end of the year would buy some space for inmates, some of whom have fallen ill because of congestion.

“Most of these inmates are convicted of theft and snatching and they were sentenced from one to two years imprisonment,” Moral said. Under the GCTA law, inmates who have shown good behavior can be freed even before their sentences end.

“This shows that our inmates now wish to be out of jail. Most of them showed good behavior to avail the GCTA,” Moral explained.

He is hopeful that lawmakers and the Quezon City government will help them push for the construction of a new jail to solve the problem on congestion that had led to riots.

The Quezon City government has bought a piece of land in Payatas, part of which will be donated to the BJMP for the construction of a new jail facility. The property will also house as sleeping quarters for jail officers, a police station, fire station and barangay (village) health center.

The new facility will be able to accommodate 6,000 to 8,000 inmates.


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