Bureau of Corrections

Catapang set to officially replace Bantag as corrections chief

Rappler.com
Catapang set to officially replace Bantag as corrections chief

APPOINTMENT. Bureau of Corrections Acting Director General Gregorio Catapang Jr. during the burial of 60 persons deprived of liberty at the New Bilibid Prison Cemetery in Muntinlupa City on November 25, 2022.

Rappler

The former military chief was first tasked to lead the prisons bureau in October, after Gerald Bantag was suspended amid questions surrounding the death of journalist Percival 'Percy Lapid' Mabasa

MANILA, Philippines – Acting Bureau of Corrections Director General Gregorio Pio Catapang Jr. will officially succeed his embattled predecessor Gerald Bantag, according to Department of Justice Secretary Boying Remulla.

“It can be a matter of hours but tomorrow is a Cabinet meeting so I might get it tomorrow,” Remulla said on Monday, January 23, referring to the ad interim appointment papers of Catapang.

Asked why the replacement took three months after Bantag was suspended, Remulla explained: “We have to study everything and we have to wait for the developments to come in for us to really be sure of what we are doing.”

Catapang said the appointment will allow him to implement his reform agenda at full speed, such as the regionalization and decongestion of the New Bilibid Prison.

Catapang, who once led the Armed Forces of the Philippines under the Aquino administration, was first tasked to lead the prisons bureau in October, after Bantag was suspended amid questions surrounding the killing of broadcaster Percival “Percy Lapid” Mabasa.

Bantag was later implicated in the case, and is now facing murder complaints in relation to the death of Mabasa and alleged middleman Jun Villamor.

Bantag has denied liability, and accused Remulla of being the “mastermind” behind Mabasa’s death. Remulla has brushed aside Bantag’s retaliation. – Rappler.com

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