UNITED Nationalist Alliance (UNA) senatorial candidate San Juan City Rep. JV Ejercito Estrada condemned the refusal of University of the Philippines Manila to allow one of its poor students to continue with her studies due to her inability to pay her tuition.
Ejercito Estrada also expressed shock and dismay after hearing the news that this may be one of the reasons why the UP Manila student took her own life.
The young lawmaker said the UP administration should abolish its policies of forced leave of absence and no late payment as these discriminate against poor students.
“Being a state university which gets the biggest share of the annual budget for state universities and colleges (SUCs), UP should never close its doors on poor but deserving students,” the young lawmaker said.
Ejercito Estrada said this is the reason why he is pushing for a Magna Carta for the Students’ Rights and Welfare. The proposal he filed during the 15th Congress recognizes the right to education of every young Filipino as it penalizes schools that will deny entry to a student who is financially incapable.
The San Juan solon has also been urging for an increase in the annual budget of SUCs to enable more poor but deserving students to get quality education.
Ejercito Estrada also said that the case of the UP Manila student should now galvanize legislators and officials on how not only to prevent this from happening again but also how the dreams of poor but deserving students to be able to get quality education can be fulfilled.
“What is imperative right now is to ensure that these deserving students who are placing education as their prime objective be provided the mechanism to fulfill their dreams,” said Ejercito Estrada.
March 16, 2013