/ 4 May 2022

SENATOR Sherwin Gatchalian sought a stronger crackdown on hazing amid continuing reports of hazing-related injuries and deaths.

“Bagama’t meron na tayong batas laban sa hazing, marami pa rin tayong nababalitaang mga namamatay dahil sa hazing. Isang hamon ito sa ating pamahalaan na ipatupad ang batas nang may buong pwersa at lakas,” Gatchalian said.

He cited the hazing incident in March that resulted in the death of Grade 12 student Reymarc Rebutazo in Laguna.

The senator reiterated his call for the strict enforcement of the Anti–Hazing Act of 2018 or Republic Act 11053, a law that he co-authored and co-sponsored.

The law prohibits all forms of hazing in fraternities, sororities and organizations in schools, including citizens’ military training and citizens army training.

The ban also applies to all other fraternities, sororities, and organizations that are not school-based, such as community-based and other similar organizations.

“Hindi na natin dapat pinahihintulutan ang ganitong uri ng karahasan laban sa ating mga kabataan at dapat nating tiyaking lahat ng mga sangkot ay mananagot sa batas,” Gatchalian said.

The chairman of the Senate Committee on Basic Education, Arts and Culture also emphasized that under the law, it is the role of schools to take proactive steps to protect students from the dangers of hazing activities.

Under the law, those who are found to have planned or participated in hazing that resulted in death, rape, sodomy or mutilation will be sentenced to reclusion perpetua and imposed a fine of P3 million.