Press Release
April 28, 2008


The century-old University of the Philippines (UP) charter takes it last bow tomorrow with the signing of the new law passed to strengthen the university's fiscal backbone.

"The new UP charter addresses the need of alternative modes of obtaining funds for research, facilities and operational cost of the university. The professors will be compensated so that they will not seek greener pasture elsewhere. Data shows that La Salle and Ateneo professors receive salaries two and a half to three times more than those in UP and so the new charter aims to correct this and prevent the exodus of professors into the private sector. The 100-year old former UP charter could not squarely deal within the context of our present needs. After more than a decade in the legislative mills, the new UP charter is a victory for the iskolar ng bayan," said Senator Kiko Pangilinan, principal author and sponsor of the measure in the 12th, 13th and 14th Congresses. He has been pushing for Charter revision since he first became senator 7 years ago. Senator Kiko was chairman of the Senate Education committee in the 12th Congress when he first sponsored the bill on the floor.

"The new UP charter is crafted to make the university at par with its international counterparts once again, as a national university UP joins the ranks of other national universities worldwide such as National University of Singapore, Chulalongkorn University in Thailand. We are saddened for the consistent slide of UP in the list of the world's tertiary institutions primarily because of the lack of sufficient financial support. Malaysia is spending five times more per student, Thailand is spending three times more student than we are, the new status of National University is meant to send the signal that government will provide the necessary support to make UP world class. The new UP charter strengthens the university's fiscal autonomy, so that the needs are addressed without delay. This is an institutional, long-term mechanism in supporting education, and in turn, the future as well," Kiko said, who was himself a UP alumnus and member of the Board of Regents twice as student regent in 1986 and then again as ex officio member in 2002 up to 2004 representing the Senate. Senator Kiko had been a staunch advocate of the revision of the UP charter since his college days or nearly 20 years now.

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