STRIKE LEAD: UP Kilos Na Laban sa Budget Cuts

Zarina San Jose
Union of Journalists of the Philippines- UP
UP Diliman

Representatives from different organizations, sororities and fraternities in the University of the Philippines (UP) Diliman gathered at the All Leaders’ Conference held Tuesday.

Part of the ALC agenda was an update on the UP budget for 2012.
The UP system has been approved a budget of P5.54 billion compared to the proposed P17 billion. There is also a decrease of P800 million for UP this year with 2011 insertions of P5.9 billion to P5.1 million for 2012.

Rg Tesa from the alliance UP Kilos Na Laban sa Budget Cuts said the budget cuts force many state universities and colleges (SUCs) to generate income from their “most stable” sources- the students.
But despite higher costs of education, students do not feel any significant changes in facilities and services.

Tesa said about 40 congressmen already support the campaign for greater state subsidy.

“Pero kailangan pa rin magkaroon ng clamour,” he said. “Hindi naman maco- compel ang mga kongresista kung walang public clamour.”
The challenge now, Tesa said, is to register the demand for higher subsidy, not only for the education sector but for social services as well.

Major student strikes around the country will start on September 19 while UP Diliman will start on the 21st.

The “culminating activity” for the strikes will be the march to Mendiola on September 23.