Press Release
August 30, 2019

Dispatch from Crame No. 581:
Sen. Leila M. de Lima on the ongoing debate regarding the GCTA Law


It should be emphasized that the most crucial point in the ongoing debate and confusion about the issue of entitlement for release under R.A. 10592, or the Expanded GCTA Law, is the question of "Good Conduct".

The IRR of the law defines "good conduct" as "the conspicuous and satisfactory behavior of a detention or convicted prisoner consisting of active involvement in rehabilitation programs, productive participation in authorized work activities or accomplishment of exemplary deeds coupled with faithful obedience to all prison/jail rules and regulations. (Rule III, Sec. 1 [p]) The grant of GCTA or expanded GCTA is envisioned to be "a reward for good conduct and exemplary behavior." (Rule III, Sec. 1 [q]) It is likewise stressed that "in all instances, the detained or convicted prisoner must faithfully obey all prison/jail rules and regulations." (Rule V, Sec. 4).

Note that good conduct here is not mere "passive" good conduct or absence of bad behavior in the sense that the PDL has not violated any prison rule, but contemplates active or pro-active good conduct exemplified by active involvement in rehabilitation programs and authorized activities and exemplary works, on top of adherence to prison rules and regulations.

Ang tanong dapat natin ngayon ay ito: Sinunod ba o sinusunod ba ang batayan na ito hinggil sa "good conduct" sa pagpapatupad ng batas? Did the 11,000 or so PDLs slated for release in the advent of the SC ruling on the retroactivity of R.A. 10592 truly qualify based on the above definition of "good conduct"?

Malinaw sa atin na ang mga katulad ni ex-Mayor Sanchez na nahulihan ng shabu at iba pang mga contrabands sa kanyang selda at yung mga NBP convicts-witnesses in the drug cases against me na umamin nga sa pagkakasangkot nila sa illegal dug trading inside NBP at nahulihan rin ng mga contrabands noong Dec. 15, 2014 major raid, ay hindi karapat-dapat bigyan ng GCTA.

Muli, ang tanong: Ilan pang mga ala-Mayor Sanchez o mga notorious inmates na patuloy ang mga paglabag sa batas at mga patakaran ang kasama sa listahan ng BuCor ng mga supposedly qualified PDLs for release under R.A. 10592?

As to the reported actual release of more than 22,000 prisoners over the past 5 years, it must be asked: How many of these were released under the old law on GCTA, i.e. Art.97 of the Revised Penal Code, and how many under the new law, R.A. 10592, which increased the creditable period for GCTA?

This question is important because the basis for the release of qualified PDLs during or between the period April 2014 or thereabouts (when the IRR took effect) and June 2019 or thereabouts when the SC decision in Inmates of NBP v. de Lima, et al was promulgated, must have been or should be the old law prescribing shorter period of allowable GCTA deduction. It could not be the increased GCTA under R.A. 10592 because the retroactivity of the amendatory law came about only after the SC decision which struck down as invalid the provision of the IRR which prescribes prospectivity.

All these questions must be pointedly asked and clear answers given in the congressional inquiry separately conducted by both Houses into the implementation of R.A. 10592. ###

(Access the handwritten version of Dispatch No. 581, here:

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