Senate panels push for separate jail for heinous crime convicts
MANILA, Philippines – The Senate committees on justice, public order, and finance have recommended the establishment of a separate jail for heinous crime convicts.
Senate Committee Report No. 5, with consolidated Senate Bill No. 1055, is pushing for a maximum penal institution built in a separate location that is in a "secured and isolated" place to ensure the safety and security of civilian communities.
The report is the product of the marathon Senate hearings on prison reform, early release of prisoners, and the botched release of rape-slay convict Antonio Sanchez. (LIVE: Senate hearing on the GCTA law)
It consolidated the bills filed by Senate President Vicente Sotto III (SB 2), Senator Richard Gordon (SB 983), and Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri (SB 1004). (READ: Zubiri wants Alcatraz-type heinous crime penitentiary')
Under the proposal, there would be 3 facilities for heinous crime convicts, one each in Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
The bill is sponsored by Gordon, Senator Juan Edgardo Angara, and Senator Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa. Angara signed the report with a note that "any area for penitentiary must be carefully considered/studied."
Aside from the sponsors, the following senators signed the committee report:
- Senate Majority Leader Juan Miguel Zubiri
- Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon
- Senator Cynthia Villar
- Senator Panfilo Lacson
- Senator Christopher "Bong" Go
- Senator Imee Marcos
- Senator Francis Tolentino
- Senator Manny Pacquiao
- Senator Grace Poe
- Senator Aquilino Pimentel III
- Senator Nancy Binay
- Senator Lito Lapid
The proposed measure will still have to undergo a period of debates and amendments in the upper chamber.
The measure recommends the transfer of heinous crime convicts to the separate facility within 30 days upon completion of the jail's construction.
Sotto is expected to sponsor the bill on the Senate floor next week.
Here is the copy of the committee report: