Benhur Abalos

Abalos pushes reforms to decongest jails

December 8, 2023 Joel dela Torre 169 views

INTERIOR Secretary Benhur Abalos vowed to push for reforms that would decongest jail facilities in the country to attain an enhanced justice system.

The Philippines has 165,000 persons incarcerated which is 11th most worldwide, and ranks third in overcrowding rate.

A National Decongestion Summit dubbed “Decongest and Reintegrate: A Conference to Unlock Solutions to Jail and Prison Overcrowding” was held in Manila recently.

It was graced by no less than President Marcos Jr. who was represented by Executive Secretary Lucas Bersamin along with Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri, House Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez, Chief Justice Alexander Gesmundo, and officials from the DILG and DOJ.

According to Abalos, congestion leads to deplorable conditions among persons deprived of liberty (PDLs) that compromise their health and well-being and it will hinder their seamless reintegration into society.

“As one of the principals of the Justice Sector Coordinating Council (JSCC), the DILG remains steadfast in supporting initiatives to address jail overcrowding, and contribute to the enhancement of our criminal justice system (in the country),” the DILG chief said in his message read by Undersecretary Juan Victor R. Llamas during the summit.