FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NOVEMBER 24, 2010
Administrators and student leaders from different State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) nationwide trooped to the Senate today and urged senators to stop the SUC budget cut and prioritize education. This, as more than a hundred student groups, faculty associations and administrations from SUCs nationwide call to strike tomorrow and Friday to express opposition to the P1.1 billion operations budget cut for SUCs which they said was tantamount to “state abandonment of education.”
Led by the National Union of Students of the Philippines (NUSP) and the Philippine Association of State Universities and Colleges (PASUC), administrators, faculty and student leaders called upon senators to increase state subsidy for SUCs and rechannel funds from military, debt servicing and pork barrel in the 2011 budget.
Campus strikes led by students, faculty and campus administrations are set tomorrow and Friday in UP Manila, UP Diliman, and Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP), according to Einstein Recedes, NUSP President. Students from Philippine Normal University (PNU), Eulogio Amang Rodriguez Institute of Technology (EARIST), Rizal Technical University (RTU) are also expected to walkout from their classes. Accross the regions, state schools have declared their participation in the protests.
“Right from the start, stakeholders of the education sector have not failed to register our dissent. Aquino allies congress insulted us by railroading the national budget without much-needed amendments. We need to strike for education; for the sake of the nation and our future. We appeal to our senators to stand for what is right,” Recedes added.
Administrators and campus faculty unions and groups are leading their students in protest. In UP Manila, the Department of Social Sciences have issued a call to strike among their professors while most of the college deans in UP Diliman have endorsed the protest actions. In PUP, no less than University President Dante Guevarra, is leading the stoppage of the operations of their campus tomorrow.
The Philippine Association of State Universties and Colleges (PASUC) have also expressed their support to the protests. Together with students and faculty, the administators of PASUC schools are geared to hold a big protest in front of the senate on December 1.
PUP students rally
Meanwhile, hundreds of students from the Polytechnic University of the Philippines staged a lightning rally in front of the senate to protest the SUC budget cut.
“Look at our school and then you tell me that the SUC budget cut is just,” said Chaser Soriano, Chairperson of the PUP Sentral na Konseho ng Mag-aaral (Central Student Council).
“PUP is one of the very few SUCs which are able to accomodate the poor, the majority of the Philippine population. Cutting our budget and that of SUCs across the nation sends a clear message that President Aquino definitely has other priorities,” she said.
Soriano said that the PUP community is deeply angered by Aquino’s decision to prioritize funding in “anti-development” and “anti-poor” programs like the Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) and in budget items like debt servicing, military and pork barrel.
“Tomorrow, we are joined by the University of the Philippines System and other schools nationwide in registering our roaring dissent and disgust to this adminstration that runs our country like a Haciendero—self-serving and anti-poor,” said Soriano. (Bulatlat.com)
PUP Central Student Council Chairman