FOLLOWING the Philippine National Police (PNP) officials’ admission of lapses in safety measures, Senator Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada wants the Senate to probe the October 9 hostage-taking incident inside Camp Crame as part of the upper chamber’s oversight powers in reviewing the security and safety measures inside the national headquarters of the country’s police force.
“While our police officers demonstrated swift and decisive action during a crisis situation, the incident nonetheless reflects poorly on our police organization’s capacity to perform their mandate of preventing crimes, enforcing laws, maintaining public order, and ensuring public safety,” Estrada emphasized.
The senator has filed Senate Resolution No. 258 urging the appropriate committee to conduct an inquiry, in aid of legislation, on the attempted escape of three detainees and the subsequent hostage-taking incident inside the Custodial Center of the PNP national headquarters in Camp Crame, Quezon City.
Estrada, in citing the necessity of the investigation, underscored the prevention of any untoward and violent incidents within Camp Crame’s premises.
In the aftermath of the incident, the senator expressed concern over allegations of maltreatment of detainees and the claims made by detainee Feliciano Sulayao Jr. when he held hostage former Sen. Leila de Lima.
“Marami kaming reklamo sa ginagawa sa amin dito, para kaming hayop itrato at ang mga pagkain ay may baboy,” De Lima said in an affidavit recalling the complaints relayed to her by Sulayao.
Sulayao and two other inmates linked to the Abu Sayyaf Group and Dawlah Islamiya terrorist group – Arnel Cabintoy and Idang Susukan – attempted a prison break at the Custodial Center’s maximum security compound last Sunday.
“The police organization should inspire confidence through the institutionalization of strict security protocols in PNP detention facilities, adequate training and capacity-building of its officers and personnel, and humane treatment of persons under police custody, being respectful of their religious beliefs and cultural practices,” the lawmaker said.