SEVENTEEN of the 24 senators in the 15th Congress approved the passage of the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) measure in 2013, Sen. Ramon “Bong” Revilla Jr. said on Tuesday.
The senator admitted that he was one of the signatories of the GCTA bill, which then president Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino 3rd signed into law in 2013 as Republic Act 10592.
Revilla offered the information during the second public hearing on the alleged misapplication of the GCTA law in releasing prisoners who had been convicted of heinous crimes, including former Calauan, Laguna mayor Antonio Sanchez.
Sen. Richard Gordon, chairman of the blue ribbon committee and who led the inquiry, said that the law’s implementing rules and regulations (IRR) were “crafted by (former) senator (Manuel “Mar”) Roxas 2nd and (detained) Sen. Leila de Lima as (then) DILG (Department of Interior and Local Government) secretary and DoJ (Department of Justice) secretary (respectively).”
Revilla said the other signatories were: the late senators Edgardo Angara, Joker Arroyo, Miriam Defensor- Santiago; then senators Jose “Jinggoy” Estrada, Juan Ponce Enrile, Sergio “Serge” Osmena 3rd, Francis “Chiz” Escudero, Gregorio Honasan 2nd, Antonio Trillanes 4th; and incumbent senators Franklin Drilon, Panfilo Lacson, Manuel “Lito” Lapid, Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan, Aquilino “Koko” Pimentel 3rd, Ralph Recto, and Vicente Sotto 3rd.
Those who did not sign the GCTA measure were then senators Alan Peter Cayetano, Teofisto “TG” Guingona 3rd, Loren Legarda, Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., and Manuel “Manny” Villar, as well as now incumbent Pilar Juliana “Pia” Cayetano.
“For the record maganda po ang layunin ng batas na ito. That’s why ang gusto po natin masunod ng tama ang batas (For the record, the law’s intention is good. That’s why we want that the law will be implemented properly),” Revilla said.
“Kawawa naman po ‘yung mga preso na nagdudusa na talaga naman na gusto na magbago talaga. Tulungan din natin sila.(The inmates who are suffering and who really want to change for the better are pitiful. Let’s help them),” he added. BERNADETTE E. TAMAYO