Senator Manny Pacquiao on Wednesday advised Bureau of CorrectionS Director General Nicanor Faeldon to take a leave-of-absence while facing probe on allegations of widespread abuse on the application of Republic Act 10592 which grants early release of prisoners on the basis of so-called Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) or good behavior.
According to Pacquiao, he still fully believes in the integrity and honesty of Faeldon but the raging controversy on the release of hardcore convicts like former Calauan Mayor Antonio Sanchez demands his full and undivided attention especially in attending ongoing investigations by the Senate and the House of Representatives.
Pacquiao said that Faeldon needs to show that he is ready and willing to help Congress in getting into the bottom of this controversy.
" I know that Undersecretary Faeldon is a good man and has served his country well but I really think that he can spare the president and this administration from embarrassment by taking a leave-of-absence.
"Besides, the president is unnecessarily dragged into this whole mess being the appointing authority. If Usec Faeldon truly respects the president, he must do the right thing. I'm pretty sure everything will work out for him in the end," Pacquiao said.
Pacquiao also noted that while he is very clear in his position that it was really wrong to release Sanchez and all other criminals convicted of heinous crimes, he believes that the "GCTA-for-sale" claims are just too fantastic and clearly exaggerated.
" Sa ngayon, kwentong barbero lang yang GCTA-for-sale na sinasabi nila dahil wala pa naman silang maipakitang ebidensiya," Pacquiao said.
Nonetheless, Pacquiao said that this controversy should provide Congress the best reason to seriously consider the re-imposition of the death penalty.
Pacquiao said that with the death penalty, criminals like Sanchez are quickly and justly punished and would-be criminals would think twice before committing a crime.
"This GCTA law should be reviewed and should only cover petty crimes. On the other hand, this controversy should already serve as a wake up call for Congress to finally approved re-imposition of death penalty on certain heinous crimes," Pacquiao said.
Source: Senate of the Philippines