Provide your email for confirmation

Tell us a bit about yourself

country *

Please provide your email address

welcome to Rappler

Login

To share your thoughts

Don't have an account?

Login with email

Check your inbox

We just sent a link to your inbox. Click the link to continue signing in. Can’t find it? Check your spam & junk mail.

Didn't get a link?

Use password?

Login with email

Reset password?

Please use the email you used to register and we will send you a link to reset your password

Check your inbox

We just sent a link to your inbox. Click the link to continue resetting your password. Can’t find it? Check your spam & junk mail.

Didn't get a link?

Sign up

Ready to get started

Already have an account?

Sign up with email

By signing up you agree to Rappler’s Terms and Conditions and Privacy

Check your inbox

We just sent a link to your inbox. Click the link to continue registering. Can’t find it? Check your spam & junk mail.

Didn't get a link?

Join Rappler+

Join Move

How often would you like to pay?

Annual Subscription

Monthly Subscription

Your payment was interrupted

Exiting the registration flow at this point will mean you will loose your progress

Your payment didn’t go through

Exiting the registration flow at this point will mean you will loose your progress

welcome to Rappler+

welcome to Move

welcome to Move & Rappler+

UP, Lorenzana meet to discuss 'way forward' after end of pact

University of the Philippines (UP) President Danilo Concepcion and Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana held a dialogue on Thursday, February 4, to discuss the "way forward and possible areas of cooperation" after the controversial termination of the 1989 UP-DND accord.

"The dialogue afforded the key leaders the opportunity to discuss the way forward and possible areas of cooperation on how both institutions can promote the mutual aspirations to ensure a safe and secure environment conducive to learning," UP and DND said in a joint statement.

They said they "look forward to subsequent meetings to continue the dialogue."

The "long-awaited" dialogue happened at the Veterans Golf Club in Quezon City and was facilitated by Commission on Higher Education (CHED) chairman Prospero de Vera III, who earlier said that the pact between UP and DND was "destined to be problematic."

"I thank Secretary Lorenzana and President Concepcion for their statesmanship and openness to talk to each other and to raise their concerns and observations on the UP-DND accord," De Vera said in a statement.

"As I have said in my previous statement, both DND and UP have publicly stated their continuing commitment to protect academic freedom, look after the welfare of students, and enforce national laws – all embodied in no less than the Constitution itself," he added.

The joint statement did not give what was discussed during the first meeting, but De Vera said that it was "crucial that both sides start discussing their concerns so that both sides can have an open and frank exchange of views over a wide range of issues" about the accord.

De Vera said that the joint statement issued on Thursday was a "good start in ensuring that the dialogue will continue."

On Tuesday, February 2, senators adopted amended Senate Resolution No. 616, which urges both parties to revisit the agreement, and to "further urge the DND to hold dialogues with other academic institutions and find a common ground that promotes the rule of law, peace and security, and protects academic freedom and the pursuit of excellence."

The resolution was initiated by former UP Student Regent Senator Francis "Kiko" Pangilinan and was co-authored by Senators Sonny Angara, Nancy Binay, Leila De Lima, Franklin Drilon, Richard Gordon, Risa Hontiveros, Grace Poe, Ralph Recto, Joel Villanueva, and Migz Zubiri.

"Activism was my love language for our country and for our people," Pangilinan said.

"We hope that this resolution will inspire an open and transparent, as well as participatory and inclusive dialogue among all parties," he added.

Meanwhile, De Vera said CHED will continue to facilitate dialogues not just between UP and DND but all public and private colleges and universities to "find common ground on how to protect the interest of 3.1 million students while upholding academic freedom."

Aside from key officials of both parties, the first dialogue was also attended by DND Undersecretary for Defense Operations Cesar Yano, AFP Spokesman Major General Edgard Arevalo, UP Vice President for Public Affairs Elena Pernia and CHED Executive Director Cinderella Filipina Benitez-Jaro.

CHED did not say if sectoral groups were represented in the meeting.

The UP-DND agreement, signed in 1989, provides that state forces have to notify the university administration first before they can enter UP campuses.

The scrapping of the deal has come under fire as students and various groups blasted the Duterte government for militarizing campuses. UP President Danilo Concepcion said that the abolition of the deal was "totally unnecessary and unwarranted.

This latest crackdown of the Duterte government against dissent shrinks further the democratic space in the country as UP campuses have been a refuge for student activism since the 1980s. – Rappler.com

Bonz Magsambol

Bonz Magsambol is a multimedia reporter for Rappler, covering health, education, and social welfare. He first joined Rappler as a social media producer in 2016.

image