The request for a University of Sto Tomas (UST) position was made by Marites Dañguilan-Vitug, whose body of work as a journalist stretches back 30 years and is the author of one of the world’s top 10 books on courts and justice systems, “Shadow of Doubt.” She is the founder of Newsbreak, which has operated as a magazine and online for more than a decade until it joined Rappler in December 2011.
Vitug, who’s also editor-at-large of Rappler, points out that UST doesn’t answer two key points raised in our story: 1) Where is the dissertation? 2) Chief Justice Corona got his PhD, summa cum laude. An overstaying resident is not qualified for honors.
“What UST is saying is that they can flout their own rules because they’re an ‘autonomous’ institution,” says Vitug. She also questioned their statement about online journalism.
“There is no quarrel with academic freedom. UST should be clear with its rules and state in what instances do they give exemptions. In the case of cj [Chief Justice Renato Corona], a lecture was enough (instead of a dissertation) and the 5-year residency requirement, to qualify for honors, was disregarded,” Vitug also says.
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