2 inmates dead, 17 wounded in riot during protest over power outage in Camp Bagong Diwa jail

June 7, 2017 - 10:56 AM
Camp Bagong Diwa in Taguig City. (photo by Gary de Leon, News5)

MANILA, Philippines — At least two inmates were killed and 17 others wounded, seven of them critically, during a riot that broke out early Tuesday evening at the Metro Manila District Jail in Camp Bagong Diwa, Taguig City.

Bureau of Jail Management and Penology spokesman Senior Inspector Xavier Solda said a clash broke out around 6:50 p.m. between members of the Bahala Na and Sputnik gangs who began heckling each other during a noise barrage to protest five days without electricity at the jail.

A number of “high risk” inmates, including political prisoners, are detained at the MMDJ.

Earlier, the rights group Samahan ng mga Ex-Detainees Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto or Selda, demanded “urgent action to bring back the power supply at the building of the Special Intensive Care Area (SICA) 1, BJMP in Camp Bagong Diwa, Taguig City.”

Selda was scheduled to lead a protest against the power outage at the Bagong Diwa jail at the BJMP National Capital Region office Wednesday.

“We have been informed that there has been no electricity at the SICA 1 building since May 30 (Tuesday), meaning it has been a week now that prisoners are suffering from the blackout,” Selda chairp Marie Hilao-Enriquez in a letter sent to the jail warden.

“While we understand that the power outage is a result of natural deterioration of power facilities, this (is) a technical matter that could be easily fixed by the power supplier and expedited by the local BJMP office to ensure it shall be fixed immediately,” she said in the letter.

Selda said “there are approximately more than 400 detainees in SICA 1. This includes the 25 political prisoners who are at the fourth floor of the SICA building,” some of whom are “ailing and elderly.”