The provincial jail warden of the Negros Oriental Detention and Rehabilitation Center is mulling the establishment of a penal colony in the province to address congestion in existing Bureau of Corrections-operated units in the country.
Provincial jail warden Franklin Culanag said he was told the first option was in Cebu but it does not have enough space for such a facility.
He said a director of the Bureau of Corrections has suggested that the facility be established instead in Negros Oriental and was told during a huddle with Negros Oriental Reps. Manuel Sagarbarria and Arnie Teves to put his proposal in writing.
He said a possible site would be in Zamboanguita, about five kilometers from the national highway. Culanag said he is optimistic it will be realized with the request of the BuCor for an additional budget of P18 billion to decongest the New Bilibid Prisons in Muntinlupa that has about 24,000 inmates, or about three times more than its normal capacity.
Culanag said he believes the proposed penal colony in Negros Oriental will pass the requirements in terms of area, and number of national prisoners, among others. It will be advantageous to national prisoners coming from the Visayas, especially those from jails in Negros Island, as it will entail less expense and less risk in transporting prisoners to the facility.
The BuCor has seven operating units located nationwide. These are the New Bilibid Prisons in Muntinlupa, the Correctional Institution for Women in Mandaluyong City and Panabo Davao, Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm in Puerto Princesa City in Palawan, Sablayan Prison and Penal Farm in Occidental Mindoro, San Ramon Prison and Penal Farm in Zamboanga City, Leyte Regional Prison in Abuyog, Leyte, and the Davao Prison and Penal Farm in Panabo, Davao.*
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