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Lacson: Make sure free tuition law benefits poor, deserving students

Panfilo Lacson

Sen. Panfilo Lacson (Philippine Daily Inquirer file photo)

Only poor and deserving students should benefit from the free tuition law for state universities and colleges (SUCs), Sen. Panfilo Lacson stressed on Sunday in an interview with radio station dzBB.

“In the implementing rules and regulations, it should be clear that only deserving students would benefit,” Lacson said in Filipino.

“Kung gagastusan ng pamahalaan yung mga bulakbulero, bulakbulera at mga bobong estudyante, hindi naman siguro nararapat yun. Dapat yung mga mahihirap at mga deserving na estudyante,”


(“It won’t be fair if the government would pay for students cut classes and those who are stupid. The poor and deserving students should benefit from it.”)

On Friday, President Rodrigo Duterte signed a law granting full tuition subsidy to 112 SUCs, local universities and colleges, and state-run technical-vocational schools.

He signed the law despite the statement of Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno that the government could not afford the tuition subsidy because the 2018 budget, unlike that of this year, would not have the P8 billion allocated to the tuition subsidy.

READ: Duterte signs into law bill granting free tuition in SUCs

Meanwhile, Panfilo pointed out that the Commission on Higher Education should screen beneficiaries accordingly.

“Dapat salain din. Otherwise napakalaki ng gagastusin natin. Eh kung paulit-ulit, nakakalimang taon na first year college pa rin. Hindi naman tayo papayag doon,” Lacson said.

(“Beneficiaries should be screened. Otherwise, we will be spending a lot. What if they have been in college for five years and they’re still in first year. We won’t let that happen.”)

Lacson said the Congress should also have an oversight body to see if the law is being implemented properly. /atm


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