BJMP to open new jail facility in Quezon City

BJMP to open new jail facility in Quezon City
The Bureau of Jail Management and Penology inaugurated the New Quezon City Jail Building in Payatas Road, Quezon City on December 15.
Bureau of Jail Management and Penology / released

MANILA, Philippines (Corrected December 16) —The Bureau of Jail Management and Penology will soon open the New Quezon City Jail Building in Payatas that would bring down the congestion rate in the city jail to 55%.

The bureau held a turnover ceremony for the completion of Phase 1 of the building.

In a statement through spokesperson Xavier Solda, the bureau said that the current Quezon City Male Dormitory in Kamuning houses 3,184 Persons Deprived of Liberty, posting a congestion rate of 1066%.

BJMP Jail Director Allan Iral said: "The new facility offers our wards more than enough space to move around and breathe. We can now spare our PDL from a lot of physical, mental and emotional problems that arise from overcrowding."

He also said that additional facilities would still be finished as the next phase of the project.

"While we still need to finish other additional facilities in this jail for the next phase of the project, we already have a good place to house our PDL," he said.

This new jail building was built two years after the Quezon City government and the BJMP signed the Deed of Usufruct for the donation of a 2.4-hectare property in Barangay Payatas, Quezon City for 25 years, renewable for another 25 years.

The QC Jail Male Dormitory, "was envisioned as a jail facility that is aligned with the living conditions set by the United Nations standards in the custody of its [PDLs],"  the bureau also said.

Jail and prison facilities in the Philippines have long been plagued by high congestion rate. This threat is even more amplified with the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, prompting the government to enforce decongestion measures including locking down facilities from visitors.

In July, the BJMP also inaugurated a new jail building in Mandaluyong that brought down the congestion rate in the city's detention facility to zero. 

Although the BJMP recorded a total of 4,672 COVID-19 cases with 50 deaths since March, the bureau said on December 8 that it no longer has active COVID-19 infections among its PDLs and personnel. — Kristine Joy Patag

[Editor's note: An earlier version of this article reported that BJMP had already inaugurated the facility. The bureau said in a clarificatory release that what it held was a turnover ceremony and that "the inauguration and blessing will be scheduled on a later date once the additional facilities were completed."]


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