SOME 300 members of Liga ng mga Iskolar ng Bayan from different lumad schools in Mindanao gathered at St. Clement Assembly Hall, Redemptorist Church along Jose P. Laurel Avenue in Davao City for their first founding assembly Wednesday, January 25.

Five lumad schools from far-flung areas took part in the event that called for quality education as they challenged President Rodrigo Duterte in stepping up programs that would benefit the lumad youth deprived of their right to education.

Adhoc chairperson Beverly Goffredo, in an interview with SunStar Davao, said scholars present during the two-day event were not subsidized by the government but were instead supported by non-government organizations to acquire education.

Thus, they encourage the officials to pay attention in addressing their plight and provide the necessary support to earn quality education which they deserve.

Mindanao Interfaith Services Foundation Inc., Salugpongan School and Cotabato Foundation College of Science and Technology, among others, participated in the gathering.

“They are not scholars of the government but those individuals who work hard to send these lumad youth to school,” she said.

Aside from education, they also push for the government to end military presence in their areas and in lumad schools, and stop accusations that lumad teachers are members of the New People's Army.

Also present during the assembly was Kabataan Partylist representative Sarah Jane Elago who showed her support to the scholars' advocacy to right of education.

This Thursday, she said they will stage a protest in front of the Department of Education to raise their demand.