By PNA and Ina Hernando Malipot
The Commission on Higher Education is enlisting the support of state universities and colleges nationwide for an intensive information campaign to help the youth fully understand Charter change.
The network of state universities in the country will be an effective venue to hold forums and workshops on Cha-cha, CHED officer-in-charge Prospero de Vera III said.
“We’re going to mobilize the SUCs for the Charter change. The state universities network is the most logical network to do information dissemination. We’re talking of 112 SUCs of more than 300 campuses. All of these campuses have venues for meetings and forum,” De Vera said on the sidelines of the first Philippines-United Kingdom Transnational Education Conference in Makati City.
He said the commission is talking to former Chief Justice Reynato S. Puno, chairperson of the consultative committee tasked by President Duterte to review provisions of the 1987 Constitution and to hold public consultations on the proposed constitutional amendments.
“Because a lot of frustrations on discussions on the proposed shift to federalism is that we only focus on the political side. We must focus as well on the substantial side – how will education look like, how will social work look like, what are the economic realities on the region when we talk about federalism? The ones who can provide answers to that are actually the universities in the region and their experts,” De Vera said.
CHED is eyeing to start the initiative as early as next month.
The University of the Philippines has offered its campus at the Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City to enable experts to conduct meetings with members of the Puno committee regarding discussions on Charter change.
De Vera hopes that holding forums and workshops in SUCs will encourage the involvement of the youth in discussions on amending the Constitution and how this will benefit them.
Duterte has long advocated federalism to decentralize government power from Metro Manila and create economic opportunities in the provinces.
The consultative committee is planning to submit its report on the proposed amendments by July, in time for the President’s third State-of-the-Nation Address.