Duterte Youth attempts to rally inside UP; students, school officials block them
MANILA, Philippines — Party-list group Duterte Youth tried to stage a rally inside the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman campus, but students and school officials including UP Chancellor Fidel Nemenzo blocked them from entering.
Photos posted on Facebook by the College Editors Guild of the Philippines (CEGP) on Tuesday showed Duterte Youth led by its former candidate and former National Youth Commission chair Ronald Cardema protesting the alleged communist recruitment inside UP campuses.
Posters brought by Duterte Youth members and those from the League of Parents of the Philippines denounced the supposed infiltration of the Communist Party of the Philippines and the New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) inside the country’s state universities.
But groups supportive of UP — and critical towards the government — went out and blocked the pro-administration groups from entering through University Avenue.
NGAYON: Muling pinasok ng League of Parents of the Philippines (LPP), kasama si Ronald Cardema, isa sa mga tagapamandila…
Accusations that UP was a hotbed for communist recruitment came out again after Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana wrote a letter to UP President Danilo Concepcion, to inform the latter that the UP’s deal with the Department of National Defense is terminated.
The agreement, called the UP-DND accord, prevents unauthorized presence of state forces inside UP campuses. Under the agreement, any police or military operation would have to be coordinated with school authorities, in an effort to ensure the students and faculty’s academic freedom.
While Lorenzana was blasted by former and current UP students along with several government officials, he claimed that they are only looking to protect the country from the communist insurgency.
Both current UP students and alumni have maintained that no communist recruitment occurred while they were inside the campus, with several young people stressing that the chance of normal life and stupid things happening inside the campuses are higher than being recruited into CPP-NPA.