Sarangani inmates get hygiene kit from Senator Pacquiao

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GENERAL SANTOS CITY (June 22) —Around 600 inmates of the Sarangani provincial jail received hygiene kit and other personal supplies during a surprise visit at the facility by Senator Emmanuel Pacquiao and other provincial officials on Wednesday afternoon.

Pacquiao, accompanied by Sarangani Gov. Steve Chiongbian Solon, took a break from training for his upcoming fight against Argentinian brawler Lucas Matthysse in Malaysia to inspect developments at the provincial jail in Barangay Baluntay, Alabel town.

The senator distributed the supplies to the inmates that were composed of bath and laundry soaps, shampoo, toothpaste, towel and rubber slippers.

During the inspection, Pacquiao acknowledged the difficult situation at the facility, which only has a capacity for over 200 inmates. He vowed to support the provincial government’s plans to improve the jail’s facilities and the construction of additional cells.

Manuel Sales Jr., provincial jail warden, said the jail’s population ballooned in the last two years due to the government’s continuing war against illegal drugs.

Sales said the provincial government spends around P16 million annually for the operations of the provincial jail, with the bulk of the funds going to the daily food ration of the inmates.

It acquired earlier this year a new prisoner transport vehicle and completed the construction of additional cell for women, holding area for sick inmates, water system and solar lighting system, he said.

Pacquiao, who represented the province’s lone district in the House of Representatives before being elected senator in 2016, also vowed to assist the completion of major development projects in the province.

He cited the ongoing construction of the Sarangani provincial hospital and the regional sports complex inside the capitol compound in Alabel town.

The senator said he and younger brother, Sarangani Rep. Ruel Pacquiao, will continue to lobby for the needed funds to facilitate the concreting of vital road networks within the province’s seven municipalities.

“We have nothing in mind but provide the best services to the people,” Pacquiao said, even as he appealed for prayers in his incoming bout with Matthysse, the reigning World Boxing Association welterweight champion, in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on July 15.-PNA

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