DILG wants to review its own pact with UP
Following the lead of the Department of National Defense (DND), the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) now wants to review its own 1992 agreement with the University of the Philippines (UP), which bars the police from entering the university without the approval of school officials.
“The nonacademic areas in UP have increased through the years and crime has been increasing, thus we need to discuss ways on how we can maintain peace and order in those areas,” DILG spokesperson Undersecretary Jonathan Malaya said in a statement late Friday.
He said representatives of UP and the DILG are set to meet next week to assess security in UP, considering the rise of residential and commercial establishments, and informal communities within all the UP campuses.
Through the years, Malaya said portions of UP’s 493-hectare Diliman campus have been leased out to developers, creating UP-Ayala Technohub along Commonwealth Avenue and UP Town Center along Katipunan Avenue.
The opening of these commercial spaces, as well as the entry of thousands of informal settlers inside UP property “poses a problem for law enforcement” although the university maintains a 51-man security force backed by 240 private guards and its own station in the campus.
Aside from the UP police’s failure to curb crime in the campus, Malaya said the upcoming UP-DILG meeting would also take up the alleged “continuous clandestine recruitment” of UP students into the communist insurgency, as claimed by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana and military officials.
But UP president Danilo Concepcion denied that university officials are condoning illegal activities in the campus and said it would abide by the university’s duty to cooperate with the authorities.
The security arrangement between UP and the DND and DILG has become a hot issue, even in Congress, many of whose members are alumni of the state university.
One of them, Taguig Rep. Alan Peter Cayetano, supported calls for a dialogue, stressing that the situation between now and 30 years ago was not too different that it could not be addressed with dialogue.
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