‘Persons Deprived of Liberty (PDL) of the Cebu City Jail have ventured into online selling to re-introduce its products back into the market after the crippling effect of the lockdowns to curb the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Cebu City Jail Male dormitory relaunched their products in a “Virtual Tiangge sa Piitan” or online selling in the jail, during the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology’s (BJMP) 30th founding anniversary, Tuesday, July 27. 

The BJMP in 2020 suspended all livelihood programs due to the pandemic and was only resumed this year as quarantine restrictions were relaxed. 

JO1 Abigail Joy Tarona, the Jail’s welfare officer, told PressOne.ph that the virtual selling was an opportunity for their products to be marketed amid the pandemic. 

Tarona said the facility started selling its products as early as late 2019 and even exported them because of its durability, unique design, and craftsmanship, but was cut short because of Covid-19. 

In a half-hour online selling that Tarona hosted, they managed to get some 20 orders worth P8,000, mostly from their signature Polypropylene Strapping (PP) hand-woven bags they call “BayongCella.”  

“All bags are made to order and can be customized,” Tarona said. 

The jail’s unique PP bags sell from P250 to P700 per piece. They also partnered with a local cooperative that supplies them with ingredients for toilet bowl cleaners worth P40 per bottle. 

The Cebu City Jail male dorm livelihood program supports two master weavers and six others in training. Ryan Sorote

Scenes from Tuesday’s Virtual Tiange sa Piitan at Cebu City Jail male dormitory with some of their Person Deprived of Liberty working on their signature brand the “BayongCella.” (Screengrab)