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Reveal Spending for GMA’s hospital arrest; do away with double standards - Ilagan
Press Release Posted on December 6th, 2011.
Gabriela Women’s Party Repesentative Luz Ilagan today called on the Department of Justice and the Veterans Memorial Medical Center to reveal how much it has been spending prettifying Mrs. Arroyo’s prison cell as she cautioned President Benigno Aquino III against overspending on the former president’s detention.
According to Ilagan, “It would be scandalous to spend so much on one prisoner amid growing poverty, budget cuts on social services and so-called calls for austerity. Moreover, let us not waste taxpayers’ money on one inmate who is, in the first place, accused of plundering the nation’s coffers.”
The Gabriela solon further said the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) and the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) operates on a budget of P1.51 billion and P5.15 billion respectively. With some 110,000 inmates this translates to an annual budget of P60,545 per prisoner. The government allocates P18,250 annual food budget and P1,095 annual medicine budget per prisoner. This translates roughly to a P50 daily food allowance and a P3 daily medicine allowance.
“Let us remember that over 60,000 other prisoners are making do with less than P165 a day, with a daily budget of P60 for food and medication,” said Ilagan.
Ilagan recalls how Mercy Castro and Juvilyn Oliveros of the Morong 43 were denied proper medical treatment and made to languish in ordinary prison cells despite sensitive pregnancies. In September of this year, political detainee Crisanto Fat died of a lingering heart ailment in Negros Occidental. “Let us not allow double standards in the exercise of justice.”