By Rizal Obanil
Former Senator and now Sorsogon Governor Francis “Chiz” Escudero urged the critics of the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) law to give it a chance to be implemented properly before making any assumption.
“Perhaps they are barking up the wrong tree by saying that the law is wrong or defective. Let’s give it a chance to be implemented properly and correctly first,” Escudero said in an interview with Karen Davila on ANC’s Headstart.
He said any law would not stand public scrutiny when its implementation is tainted with corruption.
Escudero also said the GCTA should be made transparent because under the current penal system, consulting the family of the victims or the public is not a requirement.
“The fact that when pardoning convicts, consultation with the family of the victim and the public is not a requirement, it could be an avenue for the filing of a new law that will make consultation a prerequisite to the granting of pardon,” he said.
On the issue of the costs attendant to maintaining an inmate as one of the considerations for the crafting of the GCTA law, Escudero said that it was one of the considerations but not the primary one.
He explained that it costs the government approximately P 74,000 to keep a person deprived of liberty (PDL) locked in prison.
“I’m not saying mahal kaya sige na, but it was one of the considerations too at that time given the meager resources and given also the fact that governance is all about allocating scarce resources,” he explained.