Zamboanga jail 1,300% congested

ZAMBOANGA CITY — The warden of the Zamboanga City Reformatory Center has appealed to the local government here to push through with its plan of constructing a new jail facility in the city’s west district to decongest the ZCRC.

ZCRC Jail Warden, Chief Inspector Fe Arcillas Galvez reported yesterday that the center has 2,400 detainees, about 1,300 percent more than its original capacity.

Besides, she said the present site of the ZCRC is now surrounded by houses and is no longer ideal for a jail site.

The 600-square-meter jail complex has 31 detention cells intended for only 192 inmates.

The current ZCRC population includes 123 high-profile inmates, 29 of them members of a criminal group, 11 from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, three from the Moro National Liberation Front and 90 from the Abu Sayyaf Group.

The remaining detainees are facing charges of illegal possession of prohibited drugs, homicide and murder.

Galvez said the heavy congestion of jail cells may cause an outbreak of contagious disease.

“As of now we always feed them good food loaded with vegetables to maintain their immune system,” she said.

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