MANILA - Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) director-general Nicanor Faeldon attended Monday's Senate inquiry over the alleged questionable application of the good conduct time allowance law.
Faeldon was summoned to the Senate after his office said he planned to skip the hearing and send Frederic Antonio Santos, BuCor's legal office chief, on his behalf.
Senators want to quiz Faeldon and other BuCor officials over the possible release of Antonio Sanchez, who was convicted of rape and homicide, and the early release of more than 1,900 heinous-crime convicts from 2014 to 2019.
Faeldon earlier announced Sanchez's release under good conduct time allowance, a penal act that allows long-time convicts to be released depending on their behavior in prison.
But the BuCor chief backtracked amid public uproar. He said Sanchez was not eligible to be released based on several grounds, including finding P1.5 million worth of shabu hidden in a statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Sanchez's cell at the New Bilibid Prison in Muntinlupa City in 2010.
Documents surfaced, however, that showed Faeldon supposedly signed the release order of Sanchez dated August 20, 2019.
Senate Minority Leader Franklin Drilon earlier said Faeldon may be held in contempt should he fail to show up at the hearing without a valid excuse.
Several senators have sought a revamp at the bureau and urged President Rodrigo Duterte to sack Faeldon.
"Faeldon should be removed from public office and charged with the appropriate administrative and criminal cases," Sen. Risa Hontiveros said.