Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra has assured that certain officials of the National Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa would be held accountable for last week’s riot which left nine inmates dead and seven others injured.
“I want to know why prison authorities failed to detect such a huge gang war..how this could happen in the wee hours of the morning and last for so long,” Guevarra was quoted in reports as saying.
Reports said the death toll was the result of a deadly pre-dawn tussle between members of the dominant Sputnik and Commando gangs inside the prison’s Maximum Security Compound.
At this time, NBP officials led by Malacanang-appointee Gerald Bantag could not adequately explain why armed members of the two warring gang were left roaming around during the wee hours of the morning, when they were supposed to have been locked up inside their respective cells.
Sec. Guevarra has long been pushing to amend the BuCor law to give the DOJ more supervisory authority over Bilibid activities, but to no avail.
Guevarra said he had ordered the National Bureau of Investigation to determine those responsible so the proper action can be taken.
Guevarra said he is ready to punish concerned NBP officials for failing in averting such an incident which reflects negatively on their ability in maintaining law and order inside the penitentiary.
The NBP is the nation’s largest jail complex which houses over 28,000 convicts in something designed for 6,000 – which points to over-congestion.