MANILA - The Ombudsman should "cast a wider net" and prosecute high-ranking officials tagged in the Good Conduct Time Allowance (GCTA) for sale scheme, Senate Blue Ribbon Committee chair Richard Gordon on Wednesday said, hours after 3 prison officials were charged with graft and bribery cases.
The Ombudsman should go after former Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) chief Nicanor Faeldon, said Gordon, who led the Senate probe that bared the scandal.
"We are sure that there are still others involved who should be prosecuted. They should have cast a wider net. Dapat pati 'yung malalaki ma-prosecute, tulad ni Faeldon," Gordon told reporters.
The recent Ombudsman decision only covered the dismissal of BuCor documentations chief Ramoncito Roque, as well as Maria Belinda Bansil and Veronica Buno, on top of an indictment for graft and bribery.
"It's a good turn from the Ombudsman. I'm glad that the Ombudsman moves fast and sends a strong signal," Gordon said.
"Pero dapat pati iyong mga doktor na nagpapabayad at nagpapalabas ng tao, dapat pati sila ma-prosecute. Pati yung chief legal," he said.
A Senate probe last year found that several BuCor officials had accepted payments from drug lords and heinous crime convicts in exchange for the some prisoners' early release. Under the law, those convicted for heinous crimes like murder, rape and drug trafficking cannot be eligible for an early release on account of good behavior.
Gordon's committee has indefinitely suspended its probe on the GCTA mess as the panel waits for more witnesses before filing its recommendations.