by Harley F. Palangchao
The Lower House has approved on third and final reading House Bill 2260, which seeks additional four regional and municipal trial courts in Baguio.
Baguio Rep. Nicasio Aliping Jr. said Friday the approval of HB2260 will help in the immediate disposition of cases.
Aliping added the bill is also in response to the call of various sectors that the immediate disposition of cases especially petty crimes will address the crowding of prison cells like the Baguio City Jail.
The Baguio City Jail, which is ideal for less than 200 prisoners, is currently accommodating more or less 400 inmates and even reached close to 500 in the past.
With the establishment of additional two regional trial courts and two municipal trial courts, the Baguio solon expressed hope that the overcrowding of jails will be addressed.
“The establishment of these branches will also help decongest the overcrowded Baguio City Jail with more courts to hear the cases of the inmates,” he said.
The solon, a member of the Lower House Committee on Justice, said the attendant problems brought about by the increasing population carries the corresponding increase in the number of cases handled by the courts stationed in Baguio.
“The passage of this bill will help expedite the disposition of cases, whether they involve permanent residents or transients, and give impetus to Sec. 16, Article III of the Bill of Rights of the Constitution.”
The provision declares that “All persons shall have the right to a speedy disposition of their cases before all judicial, quasi-judicial, or administrative bodies.”
Baguio RTC Branch 4 Executive Judge Mia Cawed said last week the noted delay in disposition of cases in the past was due to lack of judges.