Man at His Best

What Happens To Dealers Under Duterte

Officially 317 killed.

BY Jason S Ganesan | Aug 2, 2016 | Culture

In the one month since becoming the president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte’s kill count has officially reached at least 317, 195 of which were carried out by vigilantes. However, human rights groups claim the actual number could be double said figure.

But not all dealers and pushers in Judge Duterte’s Mega-City One gets shot in the street. Some have turned themselves in, and others arrested, all set to be tried in court. Y’know, as civilised states are supposed to do.

But, as it turns out, waiting for the wheels of justice to turn may not be a whole lot better.

Photos published by The Independent show what life is like in the Philippines’ overcrowded detention centres. Blood-boiling yet chilling, it could possibly serve as the best/worst anti-drug PSA ever devised.

Keep in mind that most of these suspected dealers are awaiting trial. Meaning they have not been found guilty. Nor have their sentence given. Some may even turn out to be innocent, just collateral detritus in Duterte’s bloody bid to become the Manliest Man in Manila.

The photos are taken from the Quezon City Jail in Manila, which houses 3,800 inmates—five times over capacity—and is reflective of municipal, city and state prisons across the country.

The longest serving inmate at the jail, Mario Dimaculangan, told The Independant that many end up losing their minds, because they barely have space to move.

The crammed conditions also means lack of access to toilets—with a single loo being shared by 130 people in the best of circumstances—leading not only to a disgusting stench, but also diseases like tuberculosis, skin infections, and diarrhoea. Which inevitably leads to inmate-on-inmate and cop-on-inmate torture.

Up to 90 percent of inmates in these detention centres who are awaiting trial are too poor to make bail or have been charged with non-bailable offences. Philippines has the highest number of pre-trial and remand detainees in the whole region, and the second highest in Asia.

This is likely due to a shortage of prosecutors and judges—in a system where drug offences get bumped up to state level automatically, worsening the backlog—results in only a handful of cases being heard each year which means that an inmates can wait years before even setting foot in court. In almost literal sh*t.