education in the Philippines

Ateneo student gov’t on shooting: ‘No space for such a gruesome act in our schools’

Michelle Abad
Ateneo student gov’t on shooting: ‘No space for such a gruesome act in our schools’

Members of the police and the SOCO inspect the premises and soroundings insdie the Ateneo de Manila University in Quezon City where a shooting incident that killed three people happened during a graduation ceremony. Funeral personnel carry a body bag of one the victims of the shooting to a van after initial investigatipns have been completed. July 24, 2022. Photo by Jire Carreon/Rappler

Jire Carreon/Rappler

The CHED and DepEd also denounce the tragic shooting in a place of learning, just weeks ahead of face-to-face school openings in August

MANILA, Philippines – Following the tragic shooting at the Ateneo de Manila University campus in Quezon City on Sunday, July 24, the ADMU student government condemned the incident, saying it had “no place” in the educational institution.

Three people were killed in the incident that happened just before graduation rites of the Ateneo Law School was supposed to take place – former Lamitan mayor Rosita Furigay, her security aide Victor George Capistrano, and Ateneo security guard Jeneven Bandiala. Furigay’s daughter Hannah, who was meant to graduate on Sunday, was wounded and has been reported as recovering, police said.

Suspect Chao Tiao Yumol was arrested and put under police custody after he tried to escape.

“The Sanggunian ng mga Mag-aaral ng mga Paaralang Loyola ng Ateneo de Manila vehemently condemns this grave incident and violence in all forms. There is no space for such a gruesome act in our schools,” the student council said the evening of the incident.

The Sanggunian raised its call for justice, and for a complete and transparent investigation to take place.

The student government, whose statement was co-signed by student organization councils, expressed grief in solidarity with the bereaved families, the university community, and at the loss of its one of its own kuyas in the line of duty.

“This incident is an attack to our community and a reflection of the culture of impunity that our country is suffering from,” the Sanggunian said. (READ: Robredo: Ex-Lamitan mayor’s killing a reminder to stand against impunity)

The Sunday attack in the university was not the first that happened on campus grounds. In December 1990, unidentified gunmen burst into a workers’ meeting at the Ateneo campus and killed two labor leaders and injured a third, according to a United Press International report.

Schools nationwide are expected to roll out, or transition to, face-to-face classes by August.

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The Commission on Higher Education was also “deeply saddened” by the “horrific” shooting in the Ateneo campus. In a Facebook post, CHED Chairman Popoy de Vera condemned the violent act committed inside a higher education institution.

“This incident also highlights the importance of keeping our campuses safe and secure as places of learning, inclusivity and peace,” De Vera said, expressing condolences to the victims’ families and the Ateneo community.

De Vera said that, in addition to the loss of lives, the shooting will lead to post-traumatic stress among victims and witnesses of the killings.

Around 600 law graduates were expected to attend the ceremony.

Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte also denounced the shooting that happened in a school.

“Such an act of violence should have no place in our society, especially in a place of learning – which is supposed to be considered a safe space for everyone, for the students mainly,” Duterte said through her spokesperson Reynold Munsayac.

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Duterte urged the Philippine National Police to address gun violence in the country.

In its statement, the Sanggunian included a link to a database where the Ateneo community could access mental health services following the shooting. – Rappler.com

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Michelle Abad

Michelle Abad is a researcher-writer with the investigative unit of Rappler. She also covers overseas Filipinos and the rights of women and children.