DOJ proposes inmates’ inoculation

By Benjamin Pulta

April 13, 2021, 5:24 pm

<p><em>(PNA file photo)</em></p>

(PNA file photo)

MANILA – The Department of Justice (DOJ) has explored the possibility of inoculating persons deprived of liberty (PDL) as curbing Covid-19 infections in cramped cells poses a challenge.

DOJ Secretary Menardo Guevarra said on Tuesday “efforts are now heavily focused on containing the spread of Covid-19”.

“The DOJ will also work on the vaccination of PDLs,” he said. "As of now, the vaccination population priority list does not include PDLs. The DOJ will argue on the basis of greater Covid risk due to overcrowding."

BuCor director Gerald Bantag, himself a Covid-19 survivor, previously assured they are doing their “best to address this pandemic”.

Safeguards are also in place to avoid a repeat of prison riots, like in October last year when nine died and in November when three were killed and more than 60 were wounded.

“The explanation was something more or less expected. A long-standing rivalry ignited by a rather flimsy encounter. Since then, the BuCor (Bureau of Corrections) has taken several measures, like frequent searches for improvised weapons,” Guevarra said. (PNA)