MANILA – Inmates of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Custodial Center have drawn up a manifesto, calling for the removal of Senators Ramon Revilla Jr. and Jinggoy Estrada from the detention facility.
The written statement, which surfaced on Wednesday, bears the signatures of 57 people, themselves detained for high-profile criminal cases.
In the statement, the detainees demand that the two senators transferred to another facility, saying that the activities of Estrada and Revilla have compromised the reputation of jail warden, Supt. Mario Malana.
They alleged that the hubbub coming from Estrada’s cell during the celebration of his wedding anniversary, as well as the constant media coverage have made the warden seem remiss in carrying out his duties to maintain order in the facility.
The signatories defended Malana, praising him for being a good custodian, and for respecting human rights.
According to the inmates, the true solution to the custodial center’s problem lies in the transfer of the two senators – jailed on charges of plunder – and not the removal of the jail warden.
Prominent signatories of the manifesto include: Benito and Wilma Tiamzon, alleged key leaders of the New People’s Army; Supt. Hansel Marantan, accused as mastermind of the Atimonan rubout; Supt. Rommel Miranda, accused of kidnapping and killing businesswoman Leah Angeles Ng; Khair Mundos, alleged leader of the Abu Sayyaf, among others.
PNP spokesperson Chief Supt. Reuben Sindac acknowledged the existence of the manifesto signed by the detainees of the custodial center, and said the PNP respects the right of detainees to voice out their complaints.
Sindac added that PNP chief Alan Purisima has ordered an investigation into the events surrounding the issue; in specific, the instance last week during which celebrities and supporters of Estrada were in the facility hours after the allowed visiting period was over.
It remains unclear how the media got hold of the manifesto, but relatives of Supt. Marantan bore witness to its authenticity.