Tuesday, November 30, 2010

No Actual Cut in SUCs Budgets says Senator Drilon as Kabataan Partylist Claims Otherwise

There was no actual cut in the budget of the country's 112 state universities and colleges (SUCs), Senator Franklin Drilon clarified Friday, amid moves to protest the budget cuts and continuing charges that the present administration has abandoned its promise to prioritize tertiary education.

Drilon, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee currently deliberating the proposed P1.645 trillion national outlay, said the budget for SUCs in the 2010 budget "was loaded with congressional insertions" which were not actually released due to the widening budget gap expected to reach P325 billion by yearend.

"There was no way by which these additional amounts could have been released because there were no additional revenues," Drilon said during Friday's marathon hearings on the money measure.

He said that then President now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo had issued a "conditional veto" indicating that the "release of the increased items of appropriations is subject to the identification by Congress of new revenue measures..."

"For the record, we did not remove anything. What happened is that in the 2010 budget, embedded in that budget are congressional insertions... to the amount of over P2.8 billion," he said, adding that the congressional initiatives came from realignments from debt service interest payments due to "disagreements" in the peso-dollar exchange rate.

In fact, Drilon said, subsidies to SUCs have been increased in next year's budget to P21.7 billion, from only P19.6 billion submitted by Arroyo for congressional approval. When the 2010 budget was approved, a total of P2.8 billion has been padded as congressional insertions by lawmakers, bringing the total budget of SUCs to P22.4 billion.

In the 2011 budget, President Benigno Aquino III submitted to Congress P21.7 billion for SUC subsidies.

"These are insertions which could not be possibly sustained. President Aquino's budget for 2011, in fact, increased Arroyo's budget by P2.125 billion for SUCs except that the congressional insertions were not continued," Drilon explained.

Kabataan Partylist: Drilon, et al. paint a distorted picture of reality

But according to Vencer Crisostomo, Secretary General of Kabataan Party-list and spokesperson of the anti-budget cut alliance Kilos na Laban sa Budget Cut, “the historic solidarity of different sectors within SUCs have set ablaze the fight against the proposed slashing of SUCs budget for 2011. Now, we are immersing ourselves to intense organizing and conceptual work since we will be launching the biggest-ever strike against the machinations of the Aquino administration.”

Attended by SUCs from the National Capital Region, Southern Tagalog and Central Luzon, the gathering geared up for a massive protest on December 1, 2010 at the Senate, where the national budget is under deliberation. In the past two weeks, thousands have poured into the streets as Senate deliberates on the national budget. Crisostomo said that the upcoming protests will “shake the sense out of the Aquino administration” to stop the budget cuts.

“The Aquino government would do well to heed the call of the people against the budget cuts. Otherwise, we will continue on painting the town red, as it were, with determined and militant protest actions nationwide,” Crisostomo said

‘Brush up on their reading skills’

Despite the strong opposition of SUCs against the budget cuts, Malacanang yesterday reiterated its prescription that SUCs commercialize and dip into their own resources. Sentors Franklin Drilon and Vicente Sotto, on the other hand, have countered the claims of budget cut as unreal and unfounded.

“The Aquino government justifies the budget cut by claiming that SUCs should commercialize to fill up budgetary deficits. What does this effectively mean? It means that tuition rates will once again increase in SUCs and that Aquino is bent on changing the nature of SUCs as schools for the can-afford. This is inadmissible,” Crisostomo said.

“The claims of Senators Franklin Drilon and Vicente Sotto that the budget cut is fictive cannot but appear as downright wrong. The slashing of the operating expenses and the zero budget for capital outlay are not part of the “congressional insertions” which have been removed from the 2011 proposed budget. They would do well to brush up on their reading skills or get a better research team,” he added.

Earlier last week, the Philippine Association of State Universities and Colleges (PASUC) had vowed to go full-force in joining the national protests against the budget cuts. In Congress, around 100 lawmakers have signed the petition against the cuts, as initiated by Rep. Raymond Palatino of Kabataan Party-list.

“The peddled lies and machinations of the Aquino administration and its cohorts cannot and will not douse the strong spirit of solidarity of the people against the budget cuts. We grow stronger in asserting the democratic right of every Filipino to quality and accessible tertiary education,” Crisostomo said.

Telephone calls made by the Diliman Diary to the Senate Secretariat confirmed that the budgets of SUCs has already been taken up under the Senate's Order of Business last November 23.

The only possiblity for further amendments to the budget of SUCs being taken up is when the bicameral conference committee made up of members of the House of Representatives and the Senate meet to thresh out the joint consolidated final version from both Houses of Congress to be submitted to Malacañang and then signed into law as the 2011 General Appropriations Act by President Benigno S. Aquino III. This is when last minute horse-trading and additional insertions into the budget take place by and between legislators.

Previously, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile said that the Senate was committed to finish its work by December 1. The Senate has been working throughout the weekend and overtime in order to pass the Senate version of the 2011 national budget as the House version has already been passed.

Earlier, in the case of the University of the Philippines System, for example U.P. President Emerlinda R. Roman disclosed that she had gathered initial commitments from Senators for the following additional allocations:
  • Philippine General Hospital P150 million
  • National Science Center P200 million
  • ERDT P300 million
  • UP Cebu P 30 million

However, the Senate and Congressional insertions on behalf of U.P. and other SUCs are no guarantee that they will be respected by President Aquino, who has made it clear that he intends to exercise his power of conditional veto which is a line-by-line prerogative power to veto specific provisions in the budget that he disapproves of (See: http://www.gov.ph/2010/11/30/education-remains-a-priority-briefer-on-the-education-and-suc-budget-for-2011/).

(Sources: Senate Secretariat and press releases of the Philippine Senate and Kabataan Partylist)

Birdphotoph.proboards.com: The Friendly Ferruginous Flycatcher of U.P. Diliman

"I was encouraged to take pictures of this bird by Gabs and I am glad that I did. Its the most friendly bird that I have ever encountered. It was also fun to watch him go after the insects and than back to his perch. Gabs even joined me early in the morning. I started with my favorite 800mm. Soon Mel, Mark, & Adri of WBCP joined us. I guess when there is company it turns into a human conversation affair. The bird did not mind us and went about his business of catching his food. I did not put any insect repellent and surprisingly I got bitten only twice by some mosquitos. This flycatcher was really very efficient in catching the insects flying around the place. He ate so much that he was pooping every now and than. Soon everyone left and it was only me and the friendly bird. He moved from the high perch to the low perch and vice versa from time to time. I waited for him to go to the low perch where I could good get a better angle. It was also amazing to see him perch so close to the thorns without getting stab. After feeling contented with what I got, I started packing my gear to head for home and here he comes again to the low perch. Since I was the only one there I approached him with caution to 3.9 meters. I decided to get my 300mm and this was when I was able to get a photo of the bird with a small bee on its beak. That really made my day."

To read the rest and to see pictures of the Friendly Ferruginous Flycatcher of U.P. Diliman, click here: Birdphotoph.proboards.com: The Friendly Ferruginous Flycatcher of U.P. Diliman

Cardiac Delight: Carinderia Buffet, Diliman, Quezon City, Philippines

"Eat-all-you-can at P99++ or P110 all-in. This is the main come-on of Carinderia Buffet. If you want to pig out on a shoe-string budget and you are not particular about the kind of Filipino food served nor the absence of ambiance (think no aircon), this place is just right for you."

"Carinderia Buffet is located along V. Luna Avenue in Quezon City, which is less than a kilometer from the East Avenue corner (where Jollibee is). Coming from Ortigas, take Edsa past Cubao, Nepa Q-mart and Kamias and turn right on East Avenue."

Monday, November 29, 2010

Diliman blogged: Issue 7, page 126

Tobie Abad's online independent comic on salamangka, aswangs, and the magic, politics and drama of human relationships. Intended for Mature Readers only.

(To enlarge the graphic, just click on it)

Diliman (Tobie Abad) / CC BY-NC-ND 3.0

To see all the issues of Diliman blogged, please click on this link: http://dilimancomic.blogspot.com/

(Editor's note: Reproduced under a Creative Commons license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/)

Faculty Regent's Updates on the November 26, 2010 BOR Meeting of the U.P. Board of Regents

Updates on the November 26, 2010 BOR meeting
Judy M. Taguiwalo
Faculty Regent
November 29, 2010

I am sharing these updates on the November 26 BOR meeting held in UP Cebu . The updates cover the substantial decisions and/or discussions which your Faculty Regent considers significant and are based on the notes I made during the meeting. The official minutes of previous Board of Regents meetings may be accessed at http://www.officeofthesecretary.webs.com/gazette.htm

1. Present at the meeting were President Roman, Former Chief Justice Reynato Puno, Former Business Administration Dean Magdaleno Albarracin, Alumni Regent Gladys Tiongco, Staff Regent Buboy Cabrera and myself. Prior to the start of the meeting, the new Student Regent, Jaqueline Eroles was sworn in by President Roman. She will serve until April 2011. President Roman chaired the early part of the meeting as the flight of CHED and BOR Chair Patricia Licuanan was delayed.

2. Important decisions on financial matters include the approval of the Christmas grocery allowance which is part of the CNA of the University and of the All UP Workers Union and the CNA between UP and the All UP Academic Employees Union.

Approval of reprogramming of UP Open University’s unexpended obligations of P4, 133,629.39     for MOOE, Faculty and Staff Development needs and for Capital outlay.

Approval of UP Manila ’s purchase of one unit of autoclave machine costing P6, 000,000.

Approval of request of UP Diliman for exemption from the restrictions on the suspension of purchase of motor vehicles to purchase one eight-seater motor vehicle for the use of the Office of the Chancellor. The amount will be sourced from the reprogrammed funds of Diliman approved by the BOR last May 27, 2010.

3. Discussions on matters arising from the previous meeting of the BOR included the Proposal to Lease Land of UPLB for a Commercial Solar Power Plant : An unsolicited bid from Sunconnex to lease land in UPLB for a commercial solar power plant was discussed in the BOR meeting last October 28. While the majority of the BOR gave the go-signal to explore the development of a commercial power plant in LB and to accept proposals from various parties, the proposal of Sunconnex was not approved. There was limited information on the company and the proposal did not include the specific area to be leased in UPLB. In the November meeting, the UP Administration, through the VP for Planning and Development again presented the proposal by Sunconnex as the sole company who submitted a proposal. The Board did not approve the proposal as the information presented was limited (it is not registered in the Philippines , no verified information on its capital, there were no other information outside of those given by the company). The Board then asked that the University announce to the public that UPLB lands may be open for lease to commercial solar power plants and present to the Board the specific area in UPLB that may be leased.

Implementation of BOR decision granting the appeal for tenure of Sarah Raymundo. The May 27, 2010 decision has not been implemented. Prof. Raymundo remains without a teaching position. The Chair again requested the President to secure an item for Prof. Raymundo.

Professor Emeritus nomination for former UPLB Chancellor Wilfredo David. The VP for Academic Affairs again reported that the UPLB Chancellor Velasco reiterated that the CU did not nominate ANY retired faculty for the Emeritus award. I asked for a copy of the criteria for Professor Emeritus adopted by UPLB.

UP Mindanao Chancellor and COA Findings. President Roman reported that the Administration has received a copy of the August 2010 COA findings but have to receive the response of Chancellor Rivero to it.

Clarification requested by a former UPD faculty whose appointment was not renewed after she successfully filed a sexual harassment complaint against the director of her institute. This stemmed from a 2006 case where faculty complainant successfully got a judgment of “less grave acts of sexual harassment” against the Director of her Institute. As the complainant had a temporary appointment, the deliberations of the Institute on her renewal was presided by the same Director as he has filed an appeal on the penalty of six months suspension. Then Faculty Regent Roland Simbulan brought the matter to the BOR and the Board instructed Chancellor Cao to create an independent committee to look into this matter. The complainant, who is now a faculty member in another CU of UP, wrote to me last October 27 requesting for the report of the independent committee. According to the UP Administration, Chancellor Cao has yet to submit the report.

4. 2010 Faculty Regent Selection Results. VPAA Guevara submitted the consolidated results of the Regent Selection

Dr. Ida Dalmacio 764
Dr. Teodoro Mendoza 623
Dr. Catelo 216
Dr. Acorda 74
Abstention 64

Total Votes cast 1741 out of 3582 qualified voters or 49% turnout
Of total votes cast: 1046 or 60% were via manual voting and 695 or 40% were cast via electronic voting
The 1,741 voters’ turnout for the 2010 Faculty Regent Selection Process was lower by 613 votes compared to the 2,354 voters’ turnout in 2008.

5. Start of Selection Process for UP Diliman Chancellor: The term of the UP Diliman Chancellor ends on February 28, 2011. The selection process shall start after the selection of the new UP President on December 1 to allow the new President free hand to constitute the Search Committee. President Roman related that this was the same process observed when she was chosen President in November 2004.

6. Appointments

UP Manila , Dean of College of Nursing Dr. Araceli O. Balabagno
UP Los Banos, Director, Animal and Diary Sciences Cluster Dr. Cesar C. Sevilla

7. UP Budget

The Student Regent shared with the BOR a copy of the “Manifesto of Unity Against Education Budget Cuts And a Challenge for the Next UP President” signed during the General Assembly of Students Councils of the UP System held in Baler, Quezon last October 29-30, 2010 convened and presided by then Student Regent Cori Alessa Co.

President Roman shared the UP Administration’s attendance in the Senate deliberations of the budget of the State Universities and Colleges. She has gathered initial commitments for the following additional allocation:
      PGH P150 million
      National Science Center P200 million
      ERDT P300 million
      UP Cebu P 30 million

8. Policy Matters

Change in the title from “Program Coordinators” to “Program Directors” for those In-Charge of the Various Research Program Thrusts/Core Facilities of the Philippine Genome Center

Reintegration of the UP Los Baños’ Agricultural Credit and Cooperatives Institute (ACCI) from the College of Public Affairs to the College of Economics and Management (CEM) and renaming it from ACCI to the Institute of Cooperatives and Bio-Enterprise Development (ICOPED)

Reiteration of a Board-Approved Additional 10% discount at the Philippine General Hospital for UP Employees. President Roman invited Dr. Eric Domingo to make a short presentation to the Board regarding this. After his presentation, I put on record that I have a standing motion for reconsideration regarding the removal of Dr. Jose Gonzales as PGH Director which has not been discussed by the Board upon the opinion of VP for Legal Affairs Teodoro Te that such discussion is “sub judice” because Dr. Gonzales has a pending court case against UP on this matter.

9. Proposal of UP Visayas for a “ LOVENature Park , A University Support Facility”. Around 19.6 hectares spread across the 1,222 hectares of the Miag-ao; Iloilo campus is envisioned to be developed into a park “to promote environmental awareness, sustainable protection of land and forest resources in the area and physical fitness while contributing economically to the local area.” The five main components are hiking and biking trail with 8 stations, a campsite, outdoor sports facilities, airsoft ground and a mini-coastal village.” The BOR deferred approval of the proposal upon confirming from the UPV Chancellor that the students, through their elected representatives, have not been consulted in the formulation of the proposal.”

10. UP Cebu as autonomous unit: The day before the BOR meeting, the Staff Regent and I held a consultation meeting with the faculty, staff and students of UP Cebu . I reported on the concerns raised during the consultations.

Financial allocation: I shared with the BOR the letter of Dr. Lawlita Cabahug, a member of the faculty of UP Cebu , who documented the concern raised during the consultation about availability of funds of the new autonomous unit when its administration will be transferred to the Office of the President. President Roman clarified that the University has set aside P50 million for UP Cebu and that she has received a commitment from Senator Serge Osmena for a P30 million allocation for the Lahug campus.

Prof. Roberto Basadre’s tenure: I have raised this concern several times. Prof. Basadre has been recommended for tenure by the various academic units of UP Cebu as early as 2009 as he has fulfilled the requirements for tenure. But as he is a faculty member of the UP Cebu High School , which is going to be restructured to a UP Cebu High School for the Arts, the UP Cebu Dean has opposed the grant of tenure. Prof. Basadre remains a temporary faculty member until May 2011. The question raised is the power of the Dean to overturn the recommendation of the academic units based on administrative reasons. Prof. Basadre and the APFC of UP Cebu have appealed to the Chancellor to grant the faculty member tenure.

For information

Copies of the appointment papers of the three newly-appointed Regents were shared during the meeting:

Elizabeth Siguion-Reyna: appointed vice Nelia T. Gonzales, for the unexpired term up to March 5, 2012.

Magdaleno B. Albarracin , Jr.: appointed vice Francis N. Chua, for the unexpired term up to February 18, 2012.

Reynato S. Puno: vice Abraham F. Sarmiento, for a term expiring on September 30, 2012.

12. The Board confirmed the “Resolution of Support for the University of the Philippines Faculty of Law, Declaring Its Adherence to Academic Integrity and Intellectual Honesty and Asking the Supreme Court to Withdraw Its Show Cause Order Against the Thirty-Seven (37) Members of the UP Law Faculty”. As it was adopted in principle in the October 28 meeting of the Board and ratified by referendum, the resolution was confirmed by the Board with Regent Puno abstaining.

Postscript: The three Sectoral Regents joined the November 26 UP Cebu protest against the budget cut which was held simultaneously with the UP Diliman and UP Manila's second day of protest.

See the Sky Night Up Close with U.P. Astrosoc!

(To enlarge the graphic, just click on it)

The 2nd National Go Championship Preliminary Tournament at the College of Science Atrium, U.P. Diliman

Date: January 15, 2011, 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Place: College of Science Atrium, University of the Philippines,
Diliman, Quezon City
Registration period: November 26, 2010 to January 15, 2011 9:30 AM

The top two players of the Preliminary tournament will play in the
Final Match for the Championship.

  • 4 rounds, McMahon system
  • Japanese Rules
  • 6.5 komi for White
  • No handicap
  • 25 minutes basic time and 2 x 30 seconds byo-yomi overtime
  • Ties for the 2nd and 3rd place will be broken by knock-out matches the next day, January 16, 2011

Side Event:
9x9 self-paired tournament. This is a loose tournament in which you
choose your own opponent.

Special prizes:
Books, fan, go sets, etc.

Main prizes TBA

9:00 AM Registration desk
9:30 AM Registration closes, Orientation
10:00 AM Round 1
11:30 AM Lunch
12:30 PM Round 2
2:00 PM Round 3
3:30 PM Round 4
5:00 PM Awarding, closing

Tiebreaker Matches, January 16, 2011, 1-5 PM
Venue TBA

Final Match, February 2011
Venue TBA

Register by filling up this online form http://tinyurl.com/NGC2reg

Contact person:
Benjamin Oris Jr. (Benj)
Mobile: 0916 799 3305
Email: benj AT phgo DOT org

Saturday, November 27, 2010

U.P. has a new Student Regent

(Editor's note: The following is a statement from the Facebook page of Faculty Regent regarding the new U.P. Student Regent Jacque Eroles and the former Student Regent Cori Alessa Co. Ms. Co was not allowed to vote as a member of the University of the Philippines (U.P.) Board of Regents (BOR) last November 17 in the election for a new U.P. President due to an issue regarding her academic standing as a student. The BOR decided to postpone the elections to December 3. Ms. Eroles succeeds Ms. Co and was sworn in as Student Regent during the November 26, 2010 BOR meeting at U.P. Cebu by U.P. President Emerlinda R. Roman)

Statement of Faculty Regent Judy M. Taguiwalo

(New U.P. Student Regent Jacque Eroles
Source: Facebook page of Regent Taquiwalo)

“Jaque Eroles took her oath as the new Student Regent last November 26, 2010 in U.P. Cebu. She will serve until April 2011. Jaque's record as Vice Chair of the USC of UP Diliman indicates that she will be a militant representative of the students in the Board of Regents and will advance democratic governance in the university and in opposing policies that will further erode the public character of UP.”

“We bid goodbye to Cori Alessa Co as Student Regent and acknowledge her tremendous contribution in uniting the UP students, through their Student Councils and organizations in the whole UP system in opposing the continued state abandonment of tertiary education and asserting that education is a right. We are confident that even as Cori is not part of the BOR anymore, she will continue to be a strong pillar of the youth and student movement.”

“Mabuhay ang mga iskolar ng bayan!”

(Ms. Cori Alessa Co when she was U.P. Student Regent
Source: http://tinyurl.com/28lws9v)

UP Cebu Isko and Iska Walkout to protest budget cut!

Editor's note: The following statement and pictures are from University of the Philippines (U.P.) Faculty Regent Judy M. Taguiwalo who was present at U.P. Cebu to attend the 1263rd U.P. Board of Regents meeting there on November 26, 2010.

Protests against the budget cut were not limited to Metro Manila universities. U.P. Cebu students, professors and staff walked out today to send the same message to the Aquino government--education is a right, no to the reduction in the already inadequate government subsidy to U.P. and other state universities and colleges. As the U.P. BOR held its meeting in U.P. Cebu, the protest also called for the implementation of the May 2010 decision granting Sarah Raymundo tenure, the grant of tenure to U.P. Cebu professor Roberto Basadre, financial allocation for U.P. Cebu which will be autonomous from U.P. Visayas starting January 2011 among other concerns. We are so proud to have been part of the U.P. Cebu protest. Padayon!!

(To enlarge the pictures, just click on them)

To see the remaining pictures, please click here: UP Cebu Isko and Iska Walkout to protest budget cut!

Solita Collas-Monsod: Who will be the Next U.P. President?

"I am told that no substantial discussion comparing the relative strengths and weaknesses of the various candidates takes place—just a series of secret balloting, with the candidates getting the least (or no) votes eliminated, until one gets a majority of the vote. And even as I write, some candidates, or their backers, have been approaching the BOR members individually, and asking for their support. And then counting noses. Some, mind you. Not all."

"... And now for the good news: It ain’t over until the fat lady sings. It is entirely possible that ..."

Read the rest here: Solita Collas-Monsod: Who will be the Next U.P. President? 

Friday, November 26, 2010

Diliman Video of the Week: 1/2 Crosswise (an amateur short film)

1/2 Crosswise is a story of a passionate writer who tries to make stories but has never finished one. She kept on having inspirations for writing, and in fact, she traveled on different places to find inspirations 'til she found out that her life would soon be turned back to the ALMIGHTY (that's the conflict). At the end, she died with this last story on the making unfinished. She therefore realized that no stories are finished. Never a story has an ending for stories are timeless. It continually grows and creates more stories. Again, it will never end even if it becomes long. Time will make the most of it. The main character left the world while her stories live on vastness.

*Note: this film is so indie. Sequences are in random arrangements. Original resolution is not obtained here.

This is the result of the cooperative effort of the members of Sulok Productions (BatStateU-Lipa)

Scriptwriter/ editor: Patrick John O. Mea
Contributing writer/ consultant: Bibeth Zaraga

Artists: Bibeth Zaraga Christian Paula Ramos

Production team: Mary Grace Sibayan Kris Antonette Mendoza Jinglyn Rodriguez

The Writing on the Wall is Clear: State Universities and Colleges will be streamlined – Budget Secretary Florencio Abad

(Senator Franklin Drilon in today's Senate budget
hearings via webcast (http://senate.gov.ph)

By Chanda Shahani

In what basically amounts to a virtual admission of the official policy of the administration of President Benigno S. Aquino III on State Universities and Colleges (SUCs), Department of Budget and Management (DBM) Secretary Florencio Abad said in an interview today that the State was committed to funding the needs of primary and secondary schools ahead of the needs of SUCs.

And in so doing, SUCs will face closures, mergers, consolidations and will be increasingly left to fend on their own on the issue of raising funds for their Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE), Abad said in a telephone interview on the ABS-CBN News Channel where League of Filipino Students (LFS) Chairman Terry Ridon was a guest. Both Abad and Ridon were interviewed on the issue of budget cuts to SUCs.

Secretary Abad said that he was in close coordination with Commission on Higher and Education Chairperson Patricia Licuanan, and there was a consensus between them that there were 112 SUCs too many and that some of them had to go with the remainder streamlining their personnel, course offerings, processes and assets.

But Chairman Ridon said that the State was mandated to provide affordable education to those who had less in life.

Secretary Abad said that legislators were partly to blame for the problem as they keep on insisting every year that new SUCs be created in favored provinces, even if there was no budget for the same. They do this through the mechanism of congressional insertions into the national budget while pressuring CHED to approve the permits of these proposed SUCs. Congressmen can pressure CHED to do this because they have the power to undertake a line item veto of CHED's budget. Even senators with an agenda can pressure the CHED Chairperson to allow the creation of new SUCs because they have the power to veto a cabinet secretary's appointment in the Commission on Appointments (CA). Under existing Senate rules, a single dissenting CA member can derail the confirmation of a cabinet secretary's appointment.

Chairman Ridon said that LFS and other student groups “would be lobbying” senators to restore the budgets of SUCs. He said that he was willing to sit down with Secretary Abad "or preferably, President Aquino" to discuss the budgetary problems of SUCs. Secretary Abad agreed, but said it would be better if CHED Chairperson Licuanan was there too along with members of both houses of Congress.

Secretary Abad said that “we have to be honest,” as in 2009 the budget of SUCs was PhP 21 billion which actually increased to a high of PhP 23.4 billion in the proposed 2011 budget. He said that the PhP 2.4 billion increase went mainly to the increases of salaries of the faculty and teachers in SUCs as required under the salary standardization law.

Secretary Abad said that the “alleged reduction” in Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses (MOOE) of SUCs amounting to PhP 1.8 billion was a misnomer given that PhP 1.1 billion of that money were insertions by congressmen which DBM could not act on “due to lack of revenues.”

He said that unlike other government institution and entities, SUCs had the privilege “of keeping their revenues from other undertakings.” Abad also said that affirmative action had to be implemented in favor of younger students in primary and secondary schools as “it is more progressive to invest in basic education.”

Secretary Abad argued that out of 100 young people who enter primary school, only 14 remain to enter and graduate from college. “These 14 have the resources and are relatively well off,” Abad said. He said that it was more logical to prioritize the allocation of scarce resources into the primary and secondary levels in order to ensure that more students end up going to college.

Secretary Abad said that many of the smaller SUCs did not make the grade in terms of being able to competently educate their students. He said that a better strategy was for the government to support CHED-defined Centers for Excellence. He gave examples such as Mindanao State University (MSU), University of the Philippines (U.P.) and Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP).

Confirming the link between cutting the budgets of SUCs and increasing the budget for Conditional Cash Transfers (CCTs), Secretary Abad said that giving PhP 1400.00 to a poor family to ensure that a child finished his or her requirements for grade or high school”was not throwing money away but was an investment.”

He said that CHED and DBM was also under pressure to streamline SUCs because many of the SUCs had students who arrived at their doorsteps at below-par capabilities and time and resources had to spent in giving them remediation courses to bring them up to academic speed. Instead of doing that, he said the Department of Education (DEPED) is adding a combined two years to the elementary and high school levels in order to bolster students' fundamentals such that they would no longer need remediation courses in college.

But Chairman Ridon said that it was “unfair for the Aquino administration to turn its back on its commitment to education.”

Secretary Abad disagreed with this assertion, however. He said that education in its entirety was getting a PhP 32 billion increase or a 20% share of the national budget. However, he admitted that the bias was for the private sector to handle the bulk of tertiary education “with SUCs being consolidated.”

But Chairman Ridon said that closing down more SUCs was discriminatory because it meant that the poorest students would no longer have a chance to avail of a tertiary education in a landscape populated with expensive private schools and a few showcase state universities that would become difficult to enter unless one was effectively a child of privilege in the primary and secondary levels with access to resources that improved the probabilities of hurdling entrance exams of these schools.

He criticized the Aquino administration for its “policy of no deviation from nine years of former Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo who did not support a clear and affordable alternative to commercial education.”

The ramification of Secretary Abad's remarks are enormous. It essentially means that CHED, working with DBM will be at the forefront of pressuring SUCs to merge with each other in order to create economies of scale.

Even CHED-certified Centers of Excellence such as MSU, U.P. and PUP are only certified on a per program, institute or college basis, which means that programs that do not merit this seal of approval could end up facing the ax from their own university administrations.

This means that by withholding increases in the budget for these SUCs, DBM is forcing SUCs to remove “less efficient” programs in favor of revenue generating programs while SUCs are forced to undertake varying degrees of commercialization in order to make ends meet.

This also means that the democratization of tertiary education may be nearing its end as high tuition costs in commercial educational institutions and tough entrance standards in the surviving CHED-certified Centers of Excellence virtually guarantee that the majority of potential students who have modest financial means and academic abilities and who want a tertiary education will have the doors rudely slammed in their faces by their own government, resulting in severe limitations being placed on their and their families' futures.

In a related development, the U.P. Diliman University Council issued a statement through U.P. Diliman's website (http://www.upd.edu.ph/~updinfo/index143.html) saying that it "is alarmed over the reduction of state subsidy to the University of the Philippines (UP) and other state universities and colleges. The proposed budget for UP is way below what the University needs."

"A low budget has a debilitating effect on UP’s capacity to fulfill its mandate as the national university. The underprivileged students’ access to quality tertiary education will be compromised. The sustained development of academic facilities and programs will also be hampered."

"The new UP Charter declares that “the State shall promote, foster, nurture and protect the right of all citizens to accessible quality education. Toward this end, it is the policy of the State to strengthen the University of the Philippines as the national university.”

"The UP budget is a measure of the government’s commitment to education and public service. It is necessary that UP is provided sufficient funding so that it can continue to achieve academic excellence. At the same time, it is imperative for the government to ensure the full release of UP budgetary allocations."

Open Studio: College of Fine Arts Fair 2010, November 27 at U.P. Diliman

27 November 2010
9am - 5 pm

CFA College Grounds

Open Studio: CFA Art Fair 2010

As in previous years, all classrooms and studios will be open at the 2010 CFA ArtFair: to art friends, parents of students, and alumni , to showcase the works of CFA student artists, their talents and skills in live academic studio settings. The 2010 CFA ArtFair will witness artists at work -creating ceramics and pottery, painting Chinese calligraphy, demonstrating batik prints, body art, silkscreening, cartooning, and printmaking. 

Artworks of students, and some alumni will go on exhibit throughout the day, and will be sold for the benefit of CFA and its students.

U.P. Kilos Na: Concerned U.P. Faculty Statement on the Budget Cut

November 26, 2010

"As faculty members, we are called to be one with our students’ call for unity and action. Our students have spoken, and have expanded the space of learning beyond the classroom and conference halls. It is time we join them. It is time to strike."

"We faculty members of the University of the Philippines, forge solidarity and unity with our students who protest the 2011 budget cut to the University of the Philippines of the Aquino government."

"Our fight against the budget cut is also a counter-argument against those who continue to deny that the budget cut is not even real and is not a threat to the university. The difference between the 2010 budget and the proposed 2011 budget proves the reality of the pending slash in the subsidy for UP. The refusal to recognize this fact is an attempt to douse the spirit of solidarity among the different sectors within the UP community, a solidarity that has been growing despite and because of the worsening conditions in the university. survival, justifying state abandonment of its constitutional role to protect public education. In response to protests against the budget cut, President Noynoy Aquino himself cited UP’s partnership with the Ayala corporation as supposed proof of UP’s self-sufficiency, thereby justifying the pending budget cut. Aquino’s reasoning goes against the UP 2008 charter which clearly states that income generated from commercial ventures cannot substitute state subsidy.”

Senator Santiago criticizes Aquino administration for slashing budgets of State Universities and Colleges to fund its Conditional Cash Transfer program

Even as students from State Universities and Colleges (SUCs) in Metro Manila are marching to Mendiola today to reject the budget cuts of SUCs by the administration of President Benigno S. Aquino III, the Senate Secretariat confirmed that the Senate is meeting today to rush the passage of the 2011 national budget so that a bicameral conference committee (Senate and House) can meet to pass the final version of the budget before President Aquino signs it into law.

Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile has promised to pass the 2011 national budget out of the Senate by December 1.

But Senator Miriam Defensor Santiago, a member of the powerful Commission on Appointments (CA),
criticized budget cuts to SUCs, linking them to the Aquino administration's need to find sources of funds for its controversial Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) program, the terms of which several legislators are questioning.

The problem may not necessarily be with CCTs per se, however. An August 24, 2010 U.P. School of Economics white paper found that CCTs were one of the few bright spots in the policies of the administration of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo (see: http://diliman-diary.blogspot.com/2010/08/4.html) and reccomended that they be continued. Rather, it is the conscious choice by the Aquino administration to target SUCs and slash their budgets that has created a major problem. Ironically, it is CCTs that have a very high approval rating for external funding from multilateral agencies and institutions such as the Asian Development Bank and World Bank because of their high success rate in temporarily alleviating poverty (see: http://diliman-diary.blogspot.com/2010/09/cash-in-hand-conditional-cash-transfers.html) . Thus there may not even be a necessity to cut SUCs budgets in the long-term as CCTs can be funded from other sources.

Senator Santiago said that as a result of cutting SUC funds to fuel CCTs, Social Welfare Secretary Dinky Soliman might find it “hard, if not impossible,” to get a CA confirmation, because her budget of P21 billion for the conditional cash transfer (CCT) program is “indefensible.”

“It is unconscionable to make drastic cuts in the budget of the University of the Philippines and other state universities and colleges, which cater to poor students, in order to support a program of dole-outs without the necessary preparation,” Santiago said.

Budget Secretary Florencio Abad proposed massive cuts in the budget of UP and other state universities and colleges (SUCs) for 2011. From P6.9 billion in 2010, Abad decreased UP’s budget to P5.5 billion, or a difference of P1.4 billion. Other SUCs are also threatened with budget cuts. Abad wants them to have a budget of P21.7 billion, down by some P700 million from their budget of P22.4 billion in 2010.

Meanwhile, Soliman wants the CCT program to have a whopping P21 billion allocation in 2011, which is more than a 100% increase from its 2010 budget of P10 billion.

“Cutting the budget of UP and SUCs to expand the CCT program is not the answer,” Santiago fumed.

Santiago said that the CCT program should go hand in hand with improvement of health and welfare services and infrastructure.

“Under the present CCT program, parents must ensure that their children go to school, and undergo regular health check-ups to continue to qualify for the program. But how can they do this if there are not enough schools or barangay health workers to see to their needs?” Santiago asked.

Last year, Santiago and Representative Gloria Macapagal Arroyo met with Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva to discuss the formula for the success of his Bolsa Familia program.

The Bolsa Familia program has been a huge success in Brazil. It is hailed all over the world for reducing poverty in Brazil.

After her meeting with Lula, Santiago filed Senate Bill No. 92, entitled “Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program Act,” which is her own version of the CCT program. It is patterned after Brazil’s Bolsa Familia program.

(Sources: Philippine Senate Secretariat, Office of Senator Santiago: http://miriam.com.ph/newsblog/?m=201010)

Sipat Lawin Ensemble's Imperio Animalia First Run Today and this Weekend at U.P. Diliman

(To enlarge the graphic, just click on it)

EVERYBODY SING: Old McDonalds had a farm, E-I-E-I-O!
Sipat Lawin Ensemble's back in a backpack! 
IMPERIO ANIMALIA First Run this weekend in UP DILIMAN! 
Nov 26 (Fri) - 4pm & 7pm, College of Music 
Nov 27 (Sat) - 10am & 3pm, AS Steps, Palma Hall
Nov 28 (Sun) - 10am & 3pm, Vargas Museum Parking Lot
For questions/inquiries, PM us on Facebook or text 0917-5008-SLE(753).


Sipat Lawin Ensemble's device-work adaptation of George Orwell's 'Animal Farm'
Featuring Claudia Enriquez, Meila Romero, Ness Roque and Sarah Salazar
Directed by JK Anicoche

Sipat Lawin Ensemble is an edge-work site-specific theater company composed of the young Theater Arts alumni of the Philippine High School for the Arts and their collaborators. The Ensemble focuses on creating new works for the stage to be performed in alternative performance spaces. Sipat Lawin engages in ensemble and collaborative work as the group aims to develop a shared urban community theater experience among artists and audiences inside and/or outside the four walls of the theater.

SIPAT LAWIN derives its name from Dulaang Sipat Lawin, the resident theatre company of more than 30 years of the Philippine High School for the Arts in Mt. Makiling. The name depicts the freely roaming hawks of Mt. Makiling whose broad range of sight reflects the company’s scope of theatre aesthetics, development, social involvement, awareness and sense of artistic creativity and freedom.

Nat'l interest to decide VFA's fate – Senator Legarda

Manila (25 November) -- Whether or not the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) between the Philippines and the United States of America (USA) must be retained or terminated will be determined by the weight of the advantages against the drawbacks of the treaty to the country and to the Filipino people, Senator Loren Legarda said.

Legarda, Co-Chair of the Legislative Oversight Committee on the VFA (LOVFA), said many provocative issues and realistic assessments of the actual implementation of the VFA were raised during the panel's first hearing on the issue of reviewing the VFA.

"This hearing brought about other issues that we need to consider in reviewing the VFA. Aside from the issues regarding jurisdiction and custody, frequency and duration of the stay of the US Forces in the country, and the kind of activities being done, we must review the VFA in the light of the Mutual Defense Treaty (MDT) and assess it as well based on the prevailing security situation and the new geo-political landscape," Legarda said.

"Furthermore, we should not only consider the quantifiable benefits of the treaty, such as how many trainings were conducted, how many equipment were turned-over, or how much financial aid in dollars was given. We also have to look into its social and environmental impact, and the effects in our community and in the lives of our people," she added.

Regarding the issue on conducting a parallel review of the MDT, Legarda said it is a matter that the Senate has yet to discuss formally since the only resolution formally pending in the Senate is the review of the VFA.

"We are reviewing first the VFA, but the VFA does not exist in isolation, it came about because of the MDT. Although we are not in the path of reviewing the MDT per se, we can look back at the events that transpired then, which gave birth to the MDT, and compare it with the situation at present," the Senator explained.

"At the time the MDT was signed in 1951, it was the time of the Cold War, our foes were different then. Today, our enemies are poverty, pollution and environmental degradation, disasters, climate change, and many other economic and social crises that have arisen through the years. This will require a great amount of consensus and shared understanding of how these things may be confronted. But in the end, these debates on the pros and cons of these agreements would ultimately lead us to the number one thing we must always consider?the national interest," Legarda concluded. (PIA-MMIO)

Agham Youth: Scientists on Strike at U.P. Diliman

"It was truly a sight to see. And I would have missed it if I didn’t think of dropping by the University of the Philippines – Diliman to check out how my comrades from the Agham Youth were doing. It was the first day of UPD’s strike against the impending P1.39B budget cut on the state’s subsidy for the entire UP system, and I just wanted to see the new faces of AY."

"What I saw instead was history unfolding before my very eyes."

Thursday, November 25, 2010

U.P. Budget Cut Walkout Videos

Video 1: Hitler, the UP Diliman Budget cut, and....... a panda?????

(To read the complete subtitles , click on the screen)

Video 2: Singing the U.P. Naming Mahal at the Oblation Plaza

Video 3: Blocking the Entrace to U.P. Diliman

Video 4: Noise Barrage at Palma Hall vs. Budget Cut

SpotlightPhilippines.blogspot.com: U.P. Diliman holds strike against 1.39B budget cut

(Palma Hall at U.P. Diliman filled to the brim with students 
protesting the U.P. budget cut. Source: http://tinyurl.com/2fq7vyh)

November 25, 2010 - "Around 2500 people joined the strike today, held at Palma Hall. The students who participated came from various colleges and sectors in UP Diliman."

"The University of the Philippines-Diliman will be holding strikes today and tomorrow, November 26, 2010, as an expression of opposition against the government's proposed 1.39B peso budget cut in UP."

P-Noy signed paper notes out starting Friday

MANILA, Nov. 24 (PNA) –- The Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) will make available starting Friday bank notes signed by President Benigno Aquino III.

A complete set of banknotes, dubbed new series, and bearing President Aquino's signature, was presented by BSP Governor Amando Tetangco Jr. to the President today at the President's Conference Room, Premier Guest House, Malacañang.

The new series is separate from the redesigned bank notes, which the central bank earlier said would be released next month.

Earlier, BSP Deputy Governor Armando Suratos said the new P500 bill will include the image of former President Corazon Aquino with her husband, Benigno Aquino Jr., whose picture is now used on the said note.

Monetary officials said the redesigned notes will feature prominent places in the country like the Mayon Volcano.

They said it will also include improved security features that would enable the public to easily determine counterfeit bills. The existing notes will still be in circulation three years after the introduction of the new design but will be out after the third year.

The BSP has released a comprehensive primer and FAQ on its new banknotes. Members of the public may access this by clicking on this link: http://www.bsp.gov.ph/publications/media.asp?id=2296

U.P. Diliman Engineering Student Council says No to 2011 Budget Cuts

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Actions taken thus far by DOJ on Maguindanao Massacre and the case of U.P. botanist Leonard Co - Secretary Leila M. de Lima

Editor's note: The following are the salient points of Justice Secretary Leila M. De Lima’s press briefing on November 24, 2010 on the following pending issues:

Maguindanao massacre cases 
  • The Justice Secretary issued today Department Circular No. 800 dated 22 November 2010 designating Undersecretary Francisco F. Baraan III as the Supervising Undersecretary for the Prosecution Panel in the Ampatuan cases, “People v. Ampatuan, et. al.” and such other cases related thereto, “to ensure effective coordination between the private and public prosecutors and close monitoring of the case developments.” Specifically, Usec. Baraan is tasked to regularly meet with the Prosecution Panel, attend case briefings and hearings, and make appropriate recommendations for the efficient prosecution of the cases.
Leonardo F. Co, et. al. case 
  • The Justice Secretary created a Fact-Finding Investigation Panel under Department Order No. 799 composed of Asst. State Prosecutors Diosdado B. Solidum and Bryan Jacinto S. Cacha from the National Prosecution Service and Chief DID Atty. Romulo Asis of the National Bureau of Investigation.
  • The panel which is tasked to conduct a “thorough investigation on the facts and circumstances surrounding” the death of Leonardo F. Co, et. al. shall coordinate with the NBI, Leyte and the PNP Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG), Leyte and such other offices and agencies to gather, assess and evaluate evidence. They are given 30 days from receipt of the Order within which to submit their written report and recommendation on whether an appropriate complaint for preliminary investigation may be filed.

Jobs with the 4PS Team - Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4PS)

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Senator Angara: Reexamine Original Mutual Defense Treaty

In yesterday's hearing (November 24) of the Legislative Oversight Committee on the Visiting Forces Agreement (LOCVFA) held in the Senate, Senator Edgardo J. Angara called on his colleagues to reexamine the Philippines' mutual defense alliances that could now be based on "outdated assumptions".

"We should discuss not just the issue of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) itself but the underlying defense security arrangement between the United States and the Philippines. The military bases agreement was concluded when our country was still practically a colony of the US and therefore, has many assumptions that may no longer exist," he explained.

According to Angara, vice-chair of the Senate Committee on foreign relations, the worldwide political dynamics has undergone a drastic change over the past decades. For instance, Russia--once treated as a pariah by the other nations because of their occupation of Georgia--has been formally invited by the NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) to take part in a mutual defense pact and joint military exercises much like the Balikatan.

Angara also cited the historic 50-year military pact signed by UK and France to form a special military force of 5000 troops, and agreeing to test their nuclear armaments jointly. This agreement between two countries, which has been enemies for centuries, was almost unthinkable just a couple of years ago.

"My point is, the whole security architecture of the world is changing rapidly, and unless we review the original defense pact between the US and the Philippines, we may suddenly realize that we are still bogged down as the least trained, least prepared and poorest equipped military in the region. I think that has been our lack in this mutual agreement deal. These new realities call for a re-examination of all our essential security alliances and arrangements," he asserted.

(Souce: http://senate.gov.ph)

Dean of U.P. Diliman's Asian Institute of Tourism (AIT) Strongly Opposes the cut on the proposed U.P. budget

Statement on the Proposed UP Budget Cut

Dr. Miguela M. Mena, Dean - UPAIT

November 25, 2010

I strongly oppose the cut made on the UP budget proposed by the Aquino administration in the 2011 General Appropriations Act (GAA).

Recognizing that the productivity of a nation is highly dependent on the investments made on the health and education of the people, the proposed UP budget certainly will not translate to higher level of productivity thus affecting country’s economic development in general. The quality of the teaching, research and extension services in the University had been extremely affected by the limited resources provided by the national government.

In this light, I strongly urge the Faculty, Staff and Students of the Asian Institute of Tourism to support and actively participate in the various multi-sectoral efforts of the UP Diliman community to provide greater subsidy to higher education and increase the budget of UP.

Dr. Miguela M. Mena
Asian Institute of Tourism
University of the Philippines
Diliman, Quezon City

Today in History - November 25

  • 1034 - Máel Coluim mac Cináeda, King of Scots dies. Donnchad, the son of his second daughter Bethócand Crínán of Dunkeld, inherits the throne.
  • 1120 - The White Ship sinks in the English Channel, drowning William Adelin, son of Henry I of England.
  • 1177 - Baldwin IV of Jerusalem and Raynald of Chatillon defeat Saladin at the Battle of Montgisard.
  • 1491 - The siege of Granada, last Moorish stronghold in Spain, begins.
  • 1542 - Battle of Solway Moss. The English army defeats the Scottish.
  • 1987 - Supertyphoon Nina pummels the Philippines with category 5 winds of 165 mph and a surge that swallows entire villages. at least 1,036 deaths attributed to the storm.
  • 1988 - German politician Rita Süssmuth becomes president of the Bundestag.
  • 1992 - The Czechoslovakia Federal Assembly votes to split the country into the Czech Republic and Slovakia from January 1, 1993.
  • 1994 - Sony founder Akio Morita announces he will be stepping down as CEO of the company.
Read the rest here: Today in History - November 25

Revised Metro Manila Number Coding Rules as of Nov. 17, 2010

The Unified Vehicular Volume Reduction Program (UVVRP) or Number Coding Scheme starts at 7:00 am - 7:00 pm with window hours starting from 10:00 am - 3:00 in the afternoon.

The Unified Vehicular Volume Reduction Program (UVVRP) or Number Coding Scheme starts at 7:00 am - 7:00 pm with window hours starting from 10:00 am - 3:00 in the afternoon.

The cities of Makati and Las Piñas do not implement window hours. Thus, number coding is strictly implemented from 7:00 am - 7:00 pm.

The city of Pasig implements its window hour from 9:00 am - 4:00 pm.

However, the cities of Parañaque, Marikina, Taguig, and Muntinlupa do not implement the Number Coding Scheme.

In addition, the following areas in Pasay do not implement the Number Coding Scheme: Ninoy Aquino Ave., MIA Road, Domestic Road, Airport Road, Sales Road, and portions of Buendia.

EDSA, C-5 Road, Diosdado Macapagal Avenue, and Roxas Boulevard are included in the implementation of Window Hours regardless of the city where they belong.

All Public Utility Buses (City and Provincial) are now covered under the Number Coding Scheme, with no "Window Hours". Motorcycles, on the other hand are exempted from the scheme.

All UVVRP exemptions and truck ban conduct passes granted in accordance with MMDA Regulation No. 96-005, as amended, MMDA Regulation 98-006-A, and MMDA Regulation 10-001 shall not include authority to use the Epifanio Delos Santos Avenue (EDSA).

Jag, Lee and Tribal SALE at Virata Hall, U.P. ISSI by U.P. Batangan

 (To enlarge the graphic, just click on it)

This Christmas season, UP Batangan brings you the Biggest Christmas Sale in UP!

Jag, Lee and Tribal SALE!
Up to 70% off!

December 9-12, 2010 8:00 a.m. -9:00 p.m.
Virata Hall, UP ISSI Bldg, E. Jacinto St., UP Diliman

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

COA's 2009 Consolidated Audited Annual Report scores six (6) U.P. campuses for "lapses in internal control."

By Chanda Shahani

More student protests are expected in the following days due to the proposed budget cuts in 2011 by the administration of President Benigno S. Aquino III to State Universities and Colleges (SUCs), including the University of the Philippines System. But U.P. officials have not helped U.P.'s cause much with legislators – due to their massive failure to control the misuse of state funds – the 2009 Consolidated Audited Annual Report (CAAR) of the Commission on Audit (COA) shows.

Department of Budget and Management Secretary Florencio Abad says that a zero-based budget approach was used for the entire proposed 2011 national budget. Zero-based budgeting essentially throws away previous assumptions of previous years and forces the beneficiaries of the budget to justify on a line item basis every proposed expenditure. However, there is barely any time left for U.P. to make its case for 2011, as Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile has already promised to pass the budget out of the Senate by December 1.

From the one-dimensional point of view of DBM, moreover, cutting the budgets of SUCs automatically creates greater efficiencies in utilization and causes graft and corruption to be minimized because funding will no longer flow abundantly, as water does from a faucet. Student protester from U.P. disagree, however, saying that the existing budget of U.P. in 2010 was barely enough to keep its operations intact. They say that it is the duty of the State to subsidize education for state scholars and say that the unique mission of U.P. is that it is a public university that teaches its students that they have the obligation to serve the Filipino people and they are not there just obtain an excellent education.

On the revenue side, student protesters say that the alternative path of raising funds – which is the commercialization of education in U.P. – is wrong, because it essentially allows the State to pass on its obligations to U.P. on to market forces which will seek out the highest revenue yielding courses and aggressively seek efficiencies of all sorts and thereby force U.P. to ultimately abandon its commitment to serve the people.

But the stark reality is that on the cost side, U.P. has not kept its side of the street clean, as state and taxpayer funds from at least six (6) U.P. campuses continue to be diverted into unauthorized uses with the outgoing U.P. Administration unable or unwilling to exercise appropriate measures despite years of warnings from COA auditors.

COA's 2009 CAAR repeatedly scores the outgoing U.P. administration for “lapses in internal control on the granting/liquidation of cash advances were observed in all of the UP campuses of which a total of P21.77 million unliquidated cash advances have been long outstanding for two years or more contrary to COA Circular No.97-002 dated February 10, 1997.”

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