March 12, 2014
UP community remembers Kristel’s death anniversary
Concerned students, faculty, staff, administrators and alumni of the University of the Philippines (UP), together with family members of Kristel Tejada, remember her death anniversary this month with a series of activities to stress the need for education reform.
With the theme “Babang Luksa: Itaas ang Laban,” the objective of the commemoration of Kristel’s tragic death is to demand that the national government and UP administration make education accessible and affordable. Issues like the newly reformed socialized tuition and financial assistance program (STFAP) now called Socialized Tuition System (STS), commercialization of education and greater state subsidy to education are expected to be highlighted.
The activities start with a press conference on March 13 (Thursday), 10 a.m. at Vinzons Hall, UP Diliman, Quezon City. This will be followed by an ecumenical mass at 5 p.m. on the same day at the grandstand of the Sunken Garden. After the mass, the contingent will march to Quezon Hall (administration building) where a candle-lighting activity will take place. Other activities on March 14 and 15 will be announced at the press conference.
It may be recalled that Kristel, a freshman at UP Manila, took her own life on March 15, 2013. While suicide is a complicated and sensitive issue, Kristel’s circumstances prior to her death show that her being forced to go on leave of absence (LOA) due to non-payment of tuition had an effect on her.
WHAT: “Babang Luksa: Itaas ang Laban” press conference
WHEN: March 13 (Thursday), 10:00 a.m.
WHERE: Vinzons Hall, UP Diliman, Quezon City
WHO (Organizers): Justice for Kristel (JFK) Alliance and UP Kilos Na
WHAT TO EXPECT:
- Selected statements from leaders of the UP community (among them Student Regent Krista Melgarejo, UP Diliman Vice-Chancellor Marion Tan and other leaders, including Christopher Tejada, Kristel’s father)
- Reading of a lamentation (tagulaylay) by members of faculty, studentry, staff, community. A black cloth will be held up against the readers of the tagulaylay, after which the black cloth will be dropped, showing a line of mourners/protesters to convey the idea that we are Kristels who are violated and deprived of the right to education.
- Offering of UP IDs and roses for Kristel; IDs will be posted on a printed tarpaulin showing Kristel’s UP ID.
- Artistic performance from the UP Center for International Studies (CIS) Bunraku Ensemble.
PHOTO OPPORTUNITIES AND MEDIA INTERVIEWS ARE AVAILABLE.
MEDIA COVERAGE IS REQUESTED