“I denounce the unilateral termination of the longstanding UP-DND Accord,” Senator Risa Hontiveros said after the Department of National Defense (DND) ended its agreement with University of the Philippines (UP) prohibiting the military and police from entering premises of any UP campus or its regional units without prior notice to the UP administration.
“Kung desidido ang administrasyon maghanap ng komunista, pagdiskitahan nila yung mga komunistang lantarang nanghihimasok sa West Philippine Sea,” Senator Hontiveros said.
The senator said that “needlessly propping up the “communist bogeyman” has always been an obscene vanity project and an excuse for their red tagging and disregard for basic human rights.”
“The University of the Philippines is a bastion of student activism and its grounds must continue to be a safe space for dissent and peaceful assembly,” she said.
In letter to UP President Danilo Concepcion, DND Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said they are aware that the CPP/NPA is conducting “clandestine recruitment” inside UP campuses nationwide and the said agreement is being used by CPP/NPA recruiters and supporters as shield and propaganda.
“By reason of national security and safety of UP students, this department intends to remedy this situation by terminating or abrogating the existing agreement in order for us to perform our legal mandate of protecting our youth against CPP/NPA recruitment activities whose design and purpose is to destroy the democracy we have all fought for,” he said.