MILITANT youth and student groups trooped to Malacañang on Monday to denounce the Aquino government’s “imposition of higher tuition fees, enforcement of repressive policies on education, and large scheme of corruption.”
Student activists led by the League of Filipino Students (LFS), Anakbayan, National Union of Students of the Philippines, and Kabataan party-list brandished placards stating “Education is a right,” “Stop tuition and other fees increases,” and “Noynoy Aquino, tuition hike king.”
“The youth are enraged by Aquino’s blatant disregard of the grave repression in schools and brunt of skyrocketing tuition fees,” Charlotte Velasco, LFS spokesperson, said.
Velasco also responded to the Palace’s recent pronouncement regarding pork barrel scholars and pointed out that “Aquino will not fool more people into another ploy to squander more funds meant for the basic social services. What we need now is sufficient budget for the education sector.”
Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte recently said the Palace awaited the Ombudsman’s decision on the criminal and administrative charges student groups filed against Commission on Higher Education (CHEd) chairperson Patricia Licuanan and other high-ranking CHEd officials.
“Malacañang pronouncement reeks with smug confidence. We’ve filed charges against the gross incompetence, ineptitude, and negligence of CHEd officials in an offensive fight to oppose the deep-rooted abandonment of the Aquino administration,” Velasco said.
The youth leader said the charges should shame the government into providing quality and accessible education to its youth.
“In truth, by providing big businesses all-out freedom to earn large profits by increasing tuition rates and confronting resistance with repression, the Aquino regime is guilty just the same,” Velasco said.