Militant youth groups: No graceful exit for Aquino
Video by Ryan Leagogo/INQUIRER.net
No graceful exit for President Benigno Aquino III.
This is the statement of various youth groups as President Aquino is set to deliver his last State of the Nation Address (Sona) on Monday, July 27.
The National Union of Students of the Philippines (NUSP) on Saturday called the Aquino administration “insensitive and antistudent” for abandoning its responsibility of providing quality and accessible education to Filipino students.
“Education is a public good, but ironically under this regime, it has become a private good because of the commercialization schemes and policies of Aquino,” said NUSP national president Sarah Jane Elago.
Elago said Aquino’s five years in office failed to stop the perennial tuition increase.
“Bagsak na bagsak itong si Presidente Aquino. Walang graceful exit sa kanya,” the student leader said.
League of Filipino Students (LFS) spokesperson Charisse Banez said Aquino should be held accountable for the deaths of students due to high cost of education.
“We condemn in the strong possible terms and hold the Aquino government for the deaths of college students due to the high cost of education. Their deaths are in Aquino’s hands,” Banez said.
The College Editors Guild of the Philippines (CEGP) also echoed the sentiments of the two student leaders, saying Aquino had a “disastrous presidency.”
“In Aquino’s five years as President, the Filipino youth witnessed how tuition and other school fees skyrocketed through deregulation,” said Marc Lino Abila, CEGP president.
Abila slammed the government’s K-to-12 program and the commercialization of Philippine education, citing Aquino’s programs did not solve the education crisis in the country but worsened it.
Kabataan party-list also scored Aquino for the worsening state of the youth in the country.
“Education, employment and standard of living took a turn for the worse under Aquino’s five-year rule,” Rep. Terry Ridon said.
“The onslaught of commercialization and education deregulation under the Aquino administration has driven not one but many students to desperation and even death,” Ridon added.
Meanwhile, Anakbayan chair Vencer Crisostomo said the youth had no future under the Aquino administration.
Crisostomo said Aquino’s “tuwid na daan (straight path)” had led Filipinos nowhere.
“Ang tuwid na daan po na ito ay patungo sa bangin. Ang tuwid na daan pong ito ay nagtulak sa atin sa impyerno. Yan po yung tinungo natin sa limang tao ng gobyernong ito,” he said.
Thousands of protesters are expected to troop to the streets on Monday to show their discontent against the Aquino administration.
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