/ 26 June 2023

THE KABATAAN Party-list urged the administration of the Pamantasan ng Cabuyao in Laguna to implement measures to protect academic freedom.

The group issued the call following Information that on June 22, 2023, PNC administrators attempted to stop the graduation of students Jomar Aquino and Joshwell Miko Decena because they were the page administrators of the Facebook page PNC Secret Files.

The page served as a venue for students to express their concerns in the university.

Decena claimed that he was unable to complete his final exams due to restrictions imposed by the university.

It was learned that PNC administrators retracted a resolution pertaining to the two students after the public clamor of students to defend freedom of expression and to allow the two students to graduate.

“In light of this event, we strongly demand the PNC administrators and Cabuyao LGU to pass a policy or resolution that will safeguard students in exercising their academic freedom and in general their democratic rights. We also urge the PNC administrators to be more accommodating of the concerns of the students and hold dialogues to address said concerns,” the Kabataan Party-list said.

“We challenge the PNC to be the administrators who champion freedom and critical thinking instead of administrators who burn dreams and aspirations,” it added.

“Academic freedom in schools should include the right of students to question policies for the over-all welfare of the community. There is nothing to be gained with censorship. In light of this, we have filed the Academic Freedom Bill and the Students’ Rights Bill to ensure students can express or act upon their ideas without fear of punishment,” the group said.