The Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) confirmed in media forum, July 1 in Quezon City that the country’s jails are now the world’s most congested, CNN Philippines reported.
After a year of war against illegal of President Rodrigo Duterte, the jails became over-crowded. Inmates described their situation as “worse than hell.”
BJMP director Serafin Barretto said 142,013 inmates have been crammed into the bureau’s 466 jails nationwide as of June 30, much higher than the 98,000 prisoners recorded before Duterte took office last year which resulted in a 583 percent congestion rate, The Philippine Star reported.
In Quezon City Jail, can accommodate 800 inmates yet more than 2,700 people are forced to occupy almost every corner of the prison. While Pulilan Municipal Jail in Bulacan, the most overcrowded facility has 159 inmates which is intended for only four prisoners.
Another example is the Biñan City Jail in Laguna,its capacity is 22 inmates and has 595 prisoners.
“Ang atin pong jail ay sobrang sikip at kulang na kulang para sa ating mga inmates,” Barreto said.
Aside from the jail’s congestion problem, BJMP is also undermanned with only 11,000 personnel and needs 83,000 more, Barreto stated.
“Sa totoo lang, dahil sa kakulangan namin ng personnel, may limitation ng resources,” he said. “Talagang nahihirapan kami. Hirap sa kalagayan ng mga personnel at saka warden doon.” he added.
The BJMP has a budget of P11.6 billion, of which P5.8 billion is set aside for recruitment.