Terrorist groups will have a safe haven for recruitment and propaganda in the University of the Philippines (UP) once House Bill (HB) 10171 or the UP Security Act is institutionalized, independent groups League of Parents of the Philippines (LPP) and Liga Independencia Pilipinas said on Wednesday.
“With the passage of HB 10171, we are putting the country especially the prime learning institution of this country, University of the Philippines, together with its students, faculties and employees in danger of being manipulated and influence by terrorist group CPP-NPA-NDF (Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front),” Remy Rosadio, the LPP founder, said as they rallied in front of the House of Representatives in Quezon City.
Rosadio said the proposed measure is “abusive and undemocratic to the interest of the entire nation” as she explained that no members of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) or Philippine National Police (PNP) will be prohibited from entry to the UP campus without prior notice and approval from UP officials even in cases of hot pursuit of a criminal or offender of law.
The military or police shall not interfere in any mass actions inside the UP campus done by its constituents, the bill states.
On top of this, the issuance of search warrants or warrants of arrest cannot be served unless there is proper notification and approval from the officials.
There will also be no warrants of arrest that can be served without the presence of two faculties designated by the UP Chancellor.
It also said no UP constituents will be subjected to custodial proceedings without prior notifications from UP officials.
“These measures are removing the right of our State and security forces over UP and powers are being transferred and exercise by school officials not duty-bound to constitutionally exercise it. Aside from that, terror elements will abuse such powers in UP to further advance their communist cause,” Rosadio said.
“Since you cannot apprehend anyone without the concurrence of the powerful school officials, they will definitely and easily evade arrest. They will have unhampered access to the school while our security forces should abide with the scrutinous process,” she added.
In January 2021, the Duterte administration scrapped the accord due to allegations of in-campus communist recruitment. The accord was signed in June 1989 to protect UP students and faculty members from possible abuses from the military and police.
To be enacted into law, the bill also needs to be passed by the Senate, then proceeds to the Office of the President, who would either sign or veto the proposed measure.
In August 2021, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said the accord would not be restored under the Duterte administration after “much scrutiny and study” of defense officials.
He said the accord only covers the Philippine Constabulary, and not the entire military and police.