Be prepared for the tough challenges ahead.
Sen. Bam Aquino made this advice to newly appointed Bureau of Corrections director general Ret. Lt. Gen. Ricardo Cruz III as he congratulated him on his new post.
“General Cruz must be prepared for the tough challenges that await him in his new position. Many have failed to address these challenges, but with Cruz’s vast experience, I am sure he’s the right man for the job,” Sen. Bam said.
Sen. Bam said among the challenges that will put Cruz to the test are the VIP treatment of moneyed prisoners, congestion and the alleged operation of drug syndicates inside the National Bilibid Prisons (NBP).
“A caste-like system in our prisons is unacceptable. Justice will not fully be served if some prisoners still enjoy the perks and privileges while incarcerated while poor prisoners endure the worst,” the senator said.
“The alleged operation of drug syndicates inside the prison walls must also be addressed immediately to prevent them from destroying more lives and families,” Sen. Bam added.
The senator also urged Cruz to expedite the release of prisoners who have fully served the sentences or those eligible for pardon to decongest the country’s cramped prisons.
“We challenge the new director to speed up the processing of the release papers of the inmates, who have served their terms dutifully. This way, the NBP would also be decongested,” Sen. Bam stressed.
The senator also called on the government to implement thorough reform in the system in all BuCor prisons all over the country, making conditions more humane for prisoners.
“They may be behind bars for their crimes, but they are still human beings who deserve humane treatment and we must not deprive them of that right,” the senator added.
By implementing reforms that will help reform these prisoners, Sen. Bam said they would emerge better and more productive citizens for our society.