Inmates of the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center were made to strip naked by anti-narcotocs agents who conducted a drug raid for the safety of both of the prisoners and operatives, an official of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency said on Thursday.
Operatives of the PDEA in Central Visayas swooped down on the CPDRC on Tuesday and confiscated some amount of illegal drugs at the detention facility.
However, pictures of the naked inmates have since gone viral and have drawn criticisms for the alleged human rights violation.
"Let them condemn, the important thing is it was for the safety ng raiding team and safety ng prisoners. Kasi pabayaan mo 'yan ma-out of control, diba nakita mo sa pictures, disciplined sila, nakaupo man sila, nakalinya sila diba?" Yogi Filemon Ruiz, regional director PDEA Region 7, told GMA News Online.
"It's better to be criticized for doing something na para sa mutual safety ng raiding team and the prisoners than to think of their rights na detrimental din para sa lahat," he added.
Some netizens took to the social media to express their rage and concern over the treatment of the prisoners.
Ang lala nung sa cebu inmates i can't— ©ams (@camillepasicat) March 1, 2017
Sobrang inhumane ng ginawa nila sa Cebu inmates. ????????????????— Robin_Hood ???? (@mjrobin21) March 1, 2017
there are photos of Cebu provincial jail inmates, naked, herded like cattle, for drug inspection that recall images from the holocaust…— Paul (@p44th) March 1, 2017
"This is ok for me," says one commenter. Emphasis on the "for me" because only unimaginative people are okay with this level of degradation. https://t.co/MAKKW9Cmpj— Ena Jarales (@ena_jarales) March 1, 2017
The greyhound operation, which was ordered by the Office of the Governor, took place last February 28 at around 1 a.m. inside the CPDRC, which has more than 3,000 inmates.
"For our safety and safety also of our prisoners, hubad sila ng damit, parang walang matago na any deadly weapon any firearm or any contraband like drugs and cellphones," Ruiz said.
"It was completely controlled, peaceful, no single shot fired, walang injured," he said, adding that no riot or stampede happened.
According to PDEA Region 7, around 80 cellphones, 19 medium sachets of shabu, one laptop, two DVD recorders, 60 deadly weapons and cash worth P91 thousand pesos were recovered.
The cash was turned over to the governor's office while the cellphones and illegal drugs will be handed to forensic experts and crime laboratory, respectively.
Disciplinary sanctions and cases will be filed against the prisoners who had contraband items. —NB, GMA News