NANAWAGAN ang ilang state universities and colleges (SUCs) sa mga mambabatas na ibalik ang P6 billion na tinapyas sa kanilang panukalang budget para sa 2024.
Ayon kay Kabataan party-list Rep. Raoul Manuel, nasa 36 SUC presidents at officials ang lumagda sa isang unity statement na nananawagan para sa mas mataas na budget para sa SUCs sa susunod na taon.
Sa ilalim ng 2024 National Expenditure Program (NEP), 30 SUCs ang nasapul ng budget cut, na nagkakahalaga ng P6,155,499,000 sa P100,882,313,000 kabuuang budget ng SUCs.
Ang halaga ay mas mababa ng 5.75% kumpara sa budget ng SUCs na P107,037,812,000 ngayong taon.
Kabilang sa signatories ang heads mula sa Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Philippine Normal University, Technological University of the Philippines, Central Luzon State University, Cavite State University, Davao del Sur State College, Caraga State University, Mariano Marcos State University, President, Samar State University, Palawan State University, Mindanao State University – Sulu, Batangas State University, at President Ramon Magsaysay State University.
“We, the undersigned, hereby register our call to the Philippine Congress to restore the budget cuts to all State Universities and Colleges and to further augment the Higher Education Budget,” anila.
“Additional budget is needed for our learning institutions to regain their public character and provide ample support for student services and faculty development. If our state universities and colleges are to be expected to do their duties, they must be funded accordingly,” dagdag pa nila.
Nakasaad sa statement na sa mahabang panahon, ang Philippine Higher Education system ay nasa krisis, lalo na sa panahon ng pandemya.
“We have yet to fully recover from it, even though the administration has lifted the state of national emergency imposed by the Covid19 pandemic. It is more important than ever for the government to recognize, respect, and protect the Filipino people’s right to education,” sabi ng SUC presidents.
Pinaalalahanan nila ang mga mambabatas na ang edukasyon ay isang ‘fundamental right’ na dapat na maging accessible sa lahat. “It plays a vital role in empowering individuals and shaping a just society. However, the current state of our education system fails to adequately cater to the needs of our students due to inadequate financial support,” dagdag pa nila.