BACOLOR, Pampanga– Fight for free college education! This was the message of Senator Alan Peter Cayetano to the youth as he enjoined them to use all available legal means to pressure the national government to allocate funds in the coming years to bridge the gap in the recently enacted Iskolar Ng Bayan (INB) law which only covers the first year of college education.
“The ultimate goal is to have free tertiary education for all. But for now, funding the entire college dreams of qualified students under the Iskolar ng Bayan (INB) Act is the next big step,” the senator said. He also reiterated his call to Kapampangan students to fight for free college education.
“Your voices, when in unison, are a powerful force. Use this youth power to fight for what we all believe is a right, not just a privilege,” the senator said. Cayetano made the announcement during a meeting with tricycle drivers’ associations here over the weekend.
Under his continuing “Presyo, Trabaho, Kita (PTK) program, Cayetano gave P50,000 each to three tricycle drivers’associations. The senator was assisted by local officials led by Mayor Jomar Hizon and Vice Mayor Ananias Canlas Jr. in the short program held at the covered court in front of the town hall here.
“Imagine what happens if after the first year, the scholars are left to fend for themselves, especially the poor but deserving students. What if they don’t find other grants to continue their studies? Are we really ready to call the INB law a failurewhen the time comes?” Cayetano asked.
The senator said both the Executive and Legislative branches of government can bridge the gap, but it should work together to come up with a solution to the shortcomings of the measure. The Cayetano law mandates all state universities and colleges to extend automatic admission and provide scholarship grants to the top 10 public high school students of their respective graduating classes.
The grant, which is envisioned to give almost 80,000 students scholarships a year, covers the full amount of tuition and other school fees for the first year of college. As the principal au-thor of the INB law, the senator has been going around campuses nationwide explaining the benefits of the measure and how it will allow indigent students pursue higher learning.