Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Published Cebu Daily News
Opinion Section
January 2005

We deeply appreciate the sentiments raised by former Senate president Jovito Salonga, who said President Arroyo would do anything in power, including kowtowing to the once popular Estrada’s wishes to but peace for herself.

Such remarks from a noted legal luminary deserved the wave-upon-wave applause of the people.

From the vantage point of the students and youth, everyday is a deepening misery as long as Gloria is in power.

President GMA, who won a fresh six-year term in office on a fraudulent presidential election in May 2004, is responsible for the further deterioration of our ailing educational system. She not only opened the Philippine educational system for exploitation from imperialist domination, she cut the education budget for elementary, secondary, and tertiary levels.

The globalization of our educational system will result in unpatriotic and anti-national curricula which will further serve the selfish interests of transnational and multi-national corporations.

Being so, the recovery of our economy through national industrialization is bleak and dim.
Through the globalization of our educational system, the students are taught and are being prepared to work abroad. Thus, the Philippines will end up not just a source of raw materials, which has been the national policy since the beginning of the 19th century to serve the rising need of the imperialist countries, we will also serve as a country that exports cheap and docile workers.

Our country can only move forward only when we encourage the educated youth to stay in our land and unite for the better.

But what happened is the exact opposite. The current regime is encouraging (directly and indirectly) the intellectuals to work abroad. After all, who wants to work in a country that does not prioritize nation building based on genuine agrarian reform so national industrialization can follow? Second, who wants to stay here when one is being prepared for export?

On the other hand, the progressive youth and student movement has, time and again, been repeating the seriousness of the current regime’s stand on cutting the education budget. It is clear that the president is a candidate for impeachment for prioritizing debt servicing and military spending over the education budget. It is stated clearly in the 1987 Constitution that education should be given the highest priority.

While we deeply agree with the sentiment of Mr. Salonga that GMA is impeachable for "obstruction of justice" in relation to the ousted Erap’s case, we also hope that the noted legal luminary will support the demands of the youth and students because the president herself is obstructing our bright future.

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