CEBU

Tell it to SunStar: Fire, charge Faeldon

Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) Director Nicanor Faeldon does not deserve the trust of the Filipino people. After repeatedly denying any involvement in the impending release of convicted rapist-murderer Antonio Sanchez, not only was he revealed by media reports as having been involved, but his signature also appeared on an Aug. 20 order to release Sanchez. Faeldon looked at the Filipino people square in the face, and lied. That alone is reprehensible enough. But the fact that he effectively coddled an unrepentant convicted rapist and murderer, turned a blind eye on Sanchez’s crimes while in prison and lied to the public, is a gross violation of the oath of office that all civil servants take.

And now Faeldon’s office allegedly released a number of Chinese drug traffickers despite the opposition of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) which described the decision as “not conforming to the process.”

Meantime, we have a list of names of inmates who are more deserving to be released—pastors, teachers, prison counselors. Why were they bypassed for a man who smuggled drugs inside a Blessed Mary statue? Bakit nauna pa si Mayor?

This is not the first time Faeldon has failed in handling critical positions. When he was head of the Bureau of Customs (BOC), P6.4 billion worth of shabu from China slipped through our ports and the “tara system” worsened. The Ombudsman itself recommended the filing of both administrative and criminal charges. It seems that everywhere Faeldon goes, corruption and abuse of power follow.

But what is perhaps the greatest casualty of Faeldon’s gross incompetence and abuse of authority as BuCor chief is Republic Act 10592, which increases the good conduct time allowance (GCTA) that can be deducted from an inmate’s total prison term. The measure is actually a good law consistent with the principles of restorative justice. But because of Sanchez and the release of several Chinese drug traffickers, Faeldon cast unnecessary doubts on the law and placed in limbo the chance for a second life of many deserving inmates who have made great effort at repentance and rehabilitation.

I call on President Rodrigo Duterte to respond decisively to this travesty of justice and immediately fire Faeldon. Section 6 of RA 10592 penalizes officials who violate the law with perpetual disqualification from holding public office and imprisonment. Faeldon should be removed from public office and charged with the appropriate administrative and criminal cases.

I also add my voice to the call to overhaul the BuCor, including its personnel and internal procedures. It’s time to clean house. Our already struggling justice system cannot afford further damage. Justice cannot be served by people who are only too willing to bend it. The President should stop his practice of recycling questionable appointees. The courtroom, where he should stand accused of obstructing justice and betraying the public interest, should be the last stop for the overly recycled and department-hopping Faeldon.

4.tell it to sunstar: Flooding galore, no government

On Sunday, Sept. 1, 2019, my car almost got drowned on N. Bacalso Ave., specifically that area near the Mambaling flyover.

Water reached waist-deep and although I was able to make it across, floodwater managed to seep into my car.

I pity the other cars whose engines gave up in the middle of the flood. Residents who gathered in the area helped push the cars that did not make it across.

In moments like these, where are government’s quick response teams? I felt that everyone was just left to their own devices and there wasn’t much help available.

Was it because it was a Sunday? What is our government thinking, that disasters also take a break on Sundays?

When I passed the Cebu South Bus Terminal, traffic at the intersection up ahead was terrible. And there were no traffic enforcers around.


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