(File photo)

MANILA – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) on Tuesday lauded the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) over the release of 103,000 qualified persons deprived of liberty (PDLs) in 2022 under its ‘zero overstaying’ policy.

"Saludo ako sa BJMP sa kanilang decongestion efforts. Matagal ng problema ang kasikipan ng mga kulungan at nararapat lamang na tuloy-tuloy ang ating pagsusumikap na tugunan ito (I salute the BJMP for their decongestion efforts. The crowded jail facilities had long been a problem and it is just proper for us to continue exerting efforts to address this concern)," DILG Secretary Benjamina Abalos Jr. said in a statement.

Abalos said he expects the BJMP to continue its efforts to uphold the welfare of PDLs in facilities under its supervision.

Citing the BJMP's data, Abalos said 6,288 PDLs or 10 percent of the total 130,138 average monthly jail population were released every month from their incarceration.

BJMP spokesperson Chief Insp. Jayrex Bustinera said 77,960 PDLs were released through the paralegal services while 25,333 PDLs were set free via other paralegal modes.

"BJMP is utilizing all legal means to decongest our jails, and we are grateful that President Marcos is supporting these efforts," BJMP chief Jail Director Allan Iral said.

Based on its latest records, the BJMP has a 367 percent congestion rate which translates to 126,820 PDLs in the whole country.

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. earlier ordered jail authorities to expedite the release of the qualified PDLs to ease the congestion rate in the country’s jail facilities. (PNA)