Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra has ordered the Bureau of Corrections to explain the closure of one of the roads passing through the compound of the New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City.
“I will act on this letter as soon as I officially receive it. But DOJ has verbally directed the BuCor to explain,” Guevarra said in a text message to reporters.
Guevarra made the statement after Muntinlupa City Rep. Rozzano Rufino Biazon requested the opening for public use the NBP’s Insular Prison Road where a wall has been erected.
In his March 22 letter to the Justice Secretary, Biazon told Guevarra that the decision by the BuCor to close the road was taken without consultation and coordination with his office.
“Mr. Secretary, may I please inform you that this unilateral action taken by the Bureau of Corrections was done without proper coordination and consultation with my office, the City Government of Muntinlupa and the people who will be primarily affected by such closure,” Biazon said.
“It was not also coordinated with either the Department of Public Works and Highways or the National Housing Authority. Insular Prison Road serves as the primary access of residents of Southville 3, a national government housing project, to and from the city proper.”
Biazon said the closure of the Insular Prison Road, “most especially at this time of a pandemic, is very inconsiderate of the plight of our constituents in Muntinlupa City.
“Such action also runs counter to inter-departmental courtesy that all government agencies must extend to each other as it was done without explaining the channels of communication and dialogue,” Biazon said.
He said the construction of the structures on the road was considered a nuisance under Article 694 of the Civil Code, “which must therefore be stopped and removed.
“The mandate of the local government unit of Muntinlupa City to promote and protect the general welfare of its constituents as provided under Section 16 of the Local Government Code was also violated by the actions of the Bureau of Corrections,” he said.
Last Sunday BuCor Deputy Director Gabriel Chaclag justified decision to close or limit the public use of a road to protect the maximum security prison in the NBP, saying the bureau does not consider it as blocking.
“What BuCor implemented is the “closing of vehicular traffic from NHA South Ville 3 passing through Maximum Security Compound,” he said.
“There is another big highway within the NBP land that NHA Southville 3 can use as alternate route,” he added.