Muntinlupa mayor expresses dismay over wall on road built by BuCor in Bilibid

Published November 29, 2021, 9:00 AM

by Jonathan Hicap

Muntinlupa Mayor Jaime Fresnedi expressed dismay over the action of the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) to build a wall on a road leading to a subdivision, public high school, and university inside the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) Reservation last Friday night.

The road has been used for decades by residents of Katarungan Village, a housing project of the Department of Justice (DOJ); and students and teachers of Muntinlupa National High School (MNHS), which was established in 1945; and the city-run Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Muntinlupa (PLMUN).

(Top) The wall built by BuCor on a road inside the New Bilibid Prison Reservation in Muntinlupa, Mayor Jaime Fresnedi and BuCor Director General Gerald Bantag (Muntinlupa PIO, BuCor)

Last Nov. 26, BuCor built a wall to close the road, which served as the main access point of the subdivision residents, students and teachers to the Muntinlupa City proper.

During the flag raising ceremony at the Muntinlupa City Hall quadrangle on Monday, Fresnedi said BuCor should have secured a permit from the city government.

“Wala namang pagkakaiba ang Bilibid sa Filinvest na kailangang humingi ng permit sa city. Filinvest dati yang BAI (Bureau of Animal Industry), walang kapasidad na magdevelop kaya nakipag tie-up sila sa Filinvest at national government. Dati ay bumuo sila ng master development plan, sinubmit sa City Council at inaprubahan, humingi sila ng building permit,” said Fresnedi.

He added, “Yung BuCor walang pagkakaiba, wala silang kakayahang magdevelop. Sa ating zoning ordinance, PUD (planned unit development) generic classification ang BuCor. Ibig sabihin, kung may development, dapat may master development plan at dapat isa-submit sa City Council para aprubahan.”

Fresnedi said BuCor should secure a city permit for anything that it will construct.

“Sa Biazon Road may development na ginagawa, ang construction ay ATOM. Pero hindi sila kumuha ng permit sa building office. Ganun din sa iba nilang ginagawa, anuman ang ginagawa nila dapat kukuha ng permit,” the mayor added.

He added, “Nakakalungkot dahil ang sabi ng pamunuan ng BuCor ay may absolute authority sila. Pero to formulate master development plan. After that, di natin sila papakialaman. After maformulate ang comprehensive plan kailangan isubmit sa City Council para aprubahan.”

“Ang K1 (Katarungan Village 1), proyekto ng gobyerno, pag proyekto ng gobyerno, pag subdivision, may isinubmit na kalsada. Ang kalsada nyan sa Bilibid. Sinasabi nila may alternative sa Daang Hari, hindi kalsada ng subdivision iyon,” he said.

Fresnedi said when Katarungan Village 1 and 2 were developed, the existence of MNHS and PLMUN were respected.

He said BuCor should have an open mind and think about the public.

In a statement about the wall, BuCor said, “The BuCor leadership in the exercise of its mandate of ensuring the safety and security of prison facility has decided to restrict the access of Katarungan Village residents to the NBP Security Facility.”

It said the “measure is made in response to several incidents and reports on illegal activities perpetuated inside the NBP Camp.”

“The Katarungan Village residents have more than enough access points They have access going to Daang Hari road. They have also access to Muntinlupa City Hall through the Green Heights Subdivision which they had temporarily closed by themselves in the past but can be opened for purposes of accessibility,” it said.

It added, “BuCor stands firm on its position on the intensified and continued efforts in performing its mandates. BuCor will implement the same kind of service and treatment with the Katarungan Village residents in accordance with law and to its lawful mandate.”

Residents tore down the first wall built by BuCor but on Nov. 27, another wall was built on the road.

Related story: Muntinlupa City Council passes 6 resolutions about Bilibid wall issue