ILOILO – Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. has committed to help the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology in the routinely repair and maintenance of Iloilo District Jail in Brgy. Nanga, Pototan town.
The governor’s support came following the objection of the Department of Justice in the previous memorandum of agreement where BJMP-6 was supposed to shoulder all the expenses.
The Iloilo District Jail, previously known as Iloilo Provincial Integrated Jail, was slowly turned over to BJMP-6 in 2012. During the transmission period, BJMP-6 took the management of the jail, including the maintenance and operating expenses.
The provincial government, on the other hand, provided assistance in terms of food subsidy. It appropriated a daily subsistence of P60.00 per inmate – an allowance higher than that of Muntinlupa.
In 2014, BJMP-6 took the full responsibility of the jail until some terms in the MOA was questioned. Thus, revisions were made. “This additional agreement we have right now is temporary or until BJMP has enough budget to take care of everything,” the governor explained.
Under this agreement, the province will handle the repair and maintenance of vehicles used to transport the inmates including the budget for fuel and lubricants up to the end of the year.
It will also provide additional subsistence allowance of ten pesos for each inmate daily since BJMP can only appropriate fifty pesos per inmate.
“We are giving them this additional ten pesos in order not to reduce the quality of food that the inmates are having at the moment,” Defensor said.
The province will likewise provide budget for the payment of electricity and water including the repair and maintenance of water system. “By next year, I hope the BJMP can handle it all. We turned over the jail to them because we know that they have the capacity and expertise to manage it,” he said.
Meanwhile, BJMP Regional Director Rex Delarmente also asked the governor to extend their usufruct of the province’s lot situated at P. Aquino Avenue in Fort San Pedro, Iloilo City.
BJMP-6 is using the 500 out of 2,280 square meter of the province’s lot as its headquarters in the metropolis since June 8, 2009. Delarmente said they are allowed to occupy the portion of the lot by virtue of a Deed of Usufruct provided by the province for 20 years.
He, however, emphasized the need for an extension of the said usufruct to 50 years in order for BJMP-6 to receive and avail of financial allocations or Capital Outlay for the construction of its regional office and other facilities.