Save Your Collegian

The Philippine Collegian, that cultural icon, is once again under attack. The UP administration is blocking the release of its funds as long as the current staff refuses to yield to the former its right to facilitate bidding for the printing. Current editors suspect two things: One, an administration official may have printing business interests at stake; and two, political forces within and without the administration want the “freeest newspaper” in the country silenced.

In any case, this is a clear sign of press freedom repression and should be resisted.

In pleading to the alumni and the interested public in behalf of the Collegian, I have compiled some quotes containing some people’s opinions of the paper:

Save Your Collegian

“The Collegian (during my time) was a brilliant and courageous paper. It was independent, defiant, highly intelligent, and greatly innovative. It took on all leading issues of the day — international, national and campus…I look bak to the Collegian experience with fondness, sometimes to the point of being maudlin. This is so becuase the paper is a world by itself. It bows to no one in brilliance, independent thinking, creativity, nationalist and liberal orientation, and most of all, white heat courage. This is the Collegian that I know.”

– Homobono Adaza, lawyer
Philippine Collegian Editor in Chief, 1956, 1957-58

“The University of the Philippines without the Collegian? This would be the ultimate oxymoron. It’s like striking at the very heart of the country’s preeminent institution of higher learning. Put another way, the Collegian had embodied the soul of the university.”

– Belinda A. Aquino, porfessor, University of Hawaii-Minoa

“As a former staff of the Philippine Collegian, I know from personal experience that the autonomy of the Philippine Collegian is a product of decades of student militancy asserting the democratization and autonomy of student publications and organizations in UP. The UP Diliman administration’ s current moves to stifle the publication of the Philippine Collegian under the guise of “fiscal control” should be strongly opposed.”

– Judy Taguiwalo, activist and educator
former Philippine Collegian staff (60s, I suppose =)

“f I recall right, UP went on to become a beacon of light in a time of darkness during martial law. The student paper UP Collegian in particular rushed in where the national newspapers feared to tread…”

Conrado de Quiros, “Naked Truth”
in There’s the Rub, PDI, August 31, 2006

“True to UP tradition, dissent did not die down but was undertaken in discreet ways…The Collegian resumed publication in 1973 under terms dictated by the Mass Media Council. But even with stringent rules, the Collegian managed to publish nationalist articles and was another venue for dissent. ..”

– Oscar Evangelista, retired professor of History, UP Diliman

“It was during the consecutive terms of Reynato Puno, Leonardo Quisumbing and Louie (Teodoro) as editors-in-chief that the Philippine Collegian became an outstanding and consistent vehicle of the ideas of the national democratic movement against US imperialism and the local exploiting classes. Since then, most of the time the editors of the Collegian and the student council leaders have been staunchly patriotic and progressive. ”

– Jose Maria Sison, political refugee, the Netherlands
Collegian Research Editor, 1961-62

Today, the Philippine Collegian, that historical icon, is under attack. The UP Administration is blocking the release of the paper’s printing funds and questions the autonomy of the most prestigious and “freest” newspaper in the country .

Help save your Collegian.


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