By Hannah Torregoza
Several senators on Friday welcomed and lauded President Duterte’s decision to sign into law the Free Higher Education Act.
Senate committee on education chairman Senator Francis Escudero said he believes the bill granting full tuition subsidy to students of state universities and colleges (SUCs) would be “one of the lasting legacies” of the Duterte administration.
“I thank President Duterte for signing the Free Tertiary Education Act! This will be one of the lasting legacies of his presidency and administration,” said Escudero, who was one of the lawmakers who defended the passage of the measure.
Sen. Juan Edgardo Angara also expressed his gratitude to the President for signing it into law “despite some advising him to veto it.”
“It is a landmark law and there will be a lot of challenges ahead in implementing all of the provisions of the law so Congress and the Executive branch and the educational institutions should all do what they can to make it workable,” said Sen. Angara, one of authors of the measure.
Sen. Nancy Binay said the Senate is committed to work hand-in-hand with the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to ensure funding for its implementation.
“We will work hand-in-hand to allocate the necessary funds yearly for this law to become effective and serve our youth, the hope of our fatherland,” Binay said.
Sen. Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito said he is all but “very, very happy” for the poor but deserving students studying in the SUCs.
“I would like to thank the President for signing this landmark legislation into law. This is an investment to further equip our most precious resource – the human resource,” Ejercito said.
For Sen. Paolo “Bam” Aquino IV, it’s already “mission accomplished.” “After a decade, the very thing Filipino families have aspired is now a law…Students, parents and the Filipino families are the real champion in this law,” Aquino said.
Read more: Duterte signs bill on free tuition in SUCs