06 March 2008

Student councils urge Congress to prioritize STRAW Bill instead of political bickering


The Student Council Alliance of the Philippines (SCAP) pressed lawmakers to prioritize the Students’ Rights and Welfare Bill instead of quarreling over the leadership in the Lower House.

“Replacing Jose de Venecia with Prospero Nograles is like choosing a lesser evil, if the latter should even prove to be a lesser “trapo” than his predecessor. There isn’t much of a change, at least not a change for the better,” Mark Boado, SCAP Chairperson said.

SCAP points out that the change of leadership in the House of Representatives will not make any difference at all. The coup attempt on de Venecia has but proven the unholy allegiance of Congress and MalacaƱang. Perhaps the palace simply doesn’t see de Venecia fit for the job anymore, since he cannot silence his own son, Joey de Venecia, during the Senate probe on ZTE. Apparently, de Venecia is only getting a dose of his own medicine. The rule of majority indeed is painful for the losing party. But what is terribly ill in this predicament is that the whole nation is once again drawn into a political squabble of the traditional politicos.

“As I see it though, knowing Nograles, it won’t be a surprise if we see another impeachment complaint quelled by July, or a resurfacing of Charter Change in no time. The minority should not waste their time in this loathsome discord and instead help the youth to push for the STRAW Bill in the most immediate time possible,” Tina Langit, SCAP Vice-Chairperson for NCR said in a statement.

The legislators should focus on substantial measures like the STRAW bill, which can help resolve the perpetual issues confronted by the youth.

“Congress people are playing a much bigger version of the boat is sinking, which, by the way, is really obnoxious. This is the concrete manifestation of a decaying institution. Whether it’d be Nograles or de Venecia, it would still be the same. What Congress is facing right now is the perennial challenge to its leadership to uphold what little integrity is left of it,” Langit added.

The quality of education in our country is continuously declining, and this dreadful political retribution is the only thing that keeps the majority in the Lower House active these days. They should be ashamed of themselves.

“There is no better time to unite, but now. The youth, especially those who are in schools, should come together and call on all legislators to give more time in acting on bills that will benefit our sector and the rest of society as well,” concluded Boado.

SCAP fervently condemns the incredulous collision of political dynasties inside HoR and urge all the members of the parliament to give STRAW bill their committed time and effort. ●
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