Youth group to stage protest vs research center-A A +A
Saturday, October 5, 2013
MILITANT youth groups are set to stage a protest on Sunday in front of the Commission on Higher Education (Ched) in Davao Region to air their sentiment against a research institute funded by the government.
Mariel Moralde, regional spokesperson for Anakbayan, said they will stage a protest to call for the abolition of the P10 billion irregular funds for the Philippines-California Advanced Research Institute (PCARI).
Moralde said the PCARI fund, which was included in the General Appropriations Act, was supposed to finance the research center and its projects for the University of California-Berkeley through Ched's budget share.
"This special budget allotted by the (President Benigno Simeon) Aquino administration remains questionable. Why should the Philippines spend P10 billion for research projects that Filipinos cannot benefit from?" Moralde said.
The PCARI, in partnership with the University of California-Berkeley and the University of the Philippines, is set to answer information technology global challenges through various innovations and outputs.
Moralde said the partnership led to the resignation of Ched's administrative and financial services director Carmina Alonzo and Ched Commissioner Nona Ricafort last September.
Even as this developed, Budget Secretary Florencio Abad and Ched Chair Patricia Licuanan are still pushing for the partnership.
"Amidst the corruption issues today, I guess Aquino should stop being deaf and blind. This huge amount of money should be re-channeled as soon as possible to education and other basic social services," Moralde said.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on October 06, 2013.