The President of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, recently announced a PHP 3 billion (USD 58.1 million) investment for the construction of 60 new prison facilities, to address overcrowding in Philippine prisons. Since the launch of Duterte’s drug war, jails have become increasingly more congested. As of 12 March, the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) housed 138,881 persons deprived of liberty (PDL), despite the fact that the 476 prisons in the country have a maximum capacity of around 30,000 people.
Speaking at the 28th anniversary of the BJMP, the president lauded the bureau’s effort cooperating with the Philippine National Police (PNP) and Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) in his administrations’ campaign against illegal drugs. There had been over 30,000 executed Greyhound Operations in the jails that were particularly successful in the confiscation of contraband. The operations confiscated illegal drugs, weapons and over PHP 2 million (USD 39 thousand) worth of cash from jail cells. Moreover, the BJMP conducted 13,000 surprise drug tests which led to the dismissal of users within the organization.
(Source: Philippine News Agency)