DURING his campaign in 2016, President Rodrigo Duterte promised to undertake a constitutional reform that will change the country’s current unitary system of government into a federal one. His appointed consultative committee has already come up with a draft charter to replace the 1987 Constitution. However, “the revision itself has not yet formally started,” Department of Political Science Chairperson Dennis Coronacion clarified in an interview with the Flame. Is it truly necessary for the Philippines to adopt a federal form of government? Empowering local government units For Coronacion, federalism is “an advantage” because it will empower the local government units (LGUs) by allowing them to make decisions by themselves since the current form of government considers
By ALYSSA MAE S. RAFAEL SINCE THE last amendment on February 11, 2005 to the Artlets Student Council (ABSC) Constitution, the eight-page document has been subjected to various amendment attempts by the different student councils that have taken office through the years. Last academic year, then ABSC President Reymark Simbulan proposed the amendment of the Constitution through a Constitutional Convention (ConCon). Its three reading sessions concluded on March 24. However, Faculty of Arts and Letters (AB) Dean Michael Anthony Vasco did not sign the proposed Constitution after the Faculty Council rejected the amendments. This caused the delay of the plebiscite, which was originally set to take place after the reading sessions. “Kumpleto na ‘yung signatures ng students. The n
By CRIS EUGENE T. GIANAN and FATE EMERALD M. COLOBONG IN THE two times that the Faculty of Arts and Letters (AB) Commission on Elections (Comelec) opened the filing of certificates of candidacy (COCs) for the position of Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Artlets Student Council (ABSC), a position that has been vacant for about five months now, not one Artlet showed up to file a candidacy. The first filing of COCs was held on Sept. 13, while a second attempt was held on Oct. 15. The glaring disinterest of Artlets in vying for a seat in the council has led the Flame to ask: what could be the reason for the absence of candidates for PRO? Lack of qualified candidates For Comelec Chairperson Giselle Manzano, election rules and the shift to K to 12 may have contributed to th
IN A country with a population of almost 110 million, one in five people suffer from mental health problems as reported by the Philippines Statistic Authority in 2010. Former Department of Health Secretary Dr. Paulyn Ubial admitted that the Philippines has one psychiatrist for every 250,000, far from the ideal ratio of one psychiatrist for every 50,000. In the global statistic of the World Health Organization-Philippines, there are more than 300 million people living with depression, one of the most common mental illnesses. Additionally, the National Statistics Office said mental illnesses are the third most common form of morbidity among Filipinos. It is undeniable that mental illnesses exist and has been a growing problem in the country. A Journalism student from the Faculty...
IN EVERY institution, not only are there rules that need to be observed and followed but also rights that must be upheld to have an orderly atmosphere. Regardless of position, every person is entitled to these rights that protect them from any mistreatment. For Journalism senior Ryah Sunday Carreon, having an official document of clearly defined students’ rights is essential in the University of Santo Tomas (UST). “Karapatan mo ‘yun bilang estudyante and it will safeguard you sa kung ano mang magiging situation mo bilang estudyante na nag-aaral sa UST.” However, in the University, a ratified students’ rights code that Thomasians can refer to does not exist. First drafted in October 2004, the Students’ Rights Code is still benching for the administration’s approval at present.
WHEN HE entered the gates of the University of Santo Tomas (UST) and walked past the Arch of the Centuries, Communication Arts junior Alexander Guevarra was convinced he was safe within the walls of the campus. “Akala ko ‘yung UST, safe space siya para sa lahat, [a] harm-free environment.” But now, Guevarra no longer sees UST as a top-of-the-line institution, all the more as one of the finest Catholic universities in the country after the fatal hazing case of Civil Law freshman and Political Science alumnus Horacio “Atio” Castillo III. On Sept. 17, Castillo was declared dead on arrival at the Chinese General Hospital, following the “welcoming rites” of Civil Law-based fraternity Aegis Juris that he attended a day before. Aegis Juris member and suspectturned-state-witness Mark
WHEN COMMUNICATION Arts junior Chelsea Blanco was asked to rate the effectiveness of St. Raymund de Peñafort building as her learning hub for the past three years, she settled with a score of five over ten. “It’s not safe [in AB] kapag nagkaroon ng emergency, sobrang congested,” she lamented. “‘Yung classrooms, [...] essential ‘yan sa pag-absorb ng knowledge bilang isang estudyante [dahil kailangan kumportable rin kami].” Blanco expected that the facilities in the University of Santo Tomas, as one of the top notch universities in the country, would be of high quality but what she was met with only disappointed her. Built in 1955, St. Raymund’s has been home to the Faculty of Arts and Letters (AB) since the merger of the Faculty of Philosophy and Letters and the College of Libe
THE MEDIA is under attack. Releasing content on different platforms—print, broadcast, and online—the media has always been a trusted source of news and information. But in the past few months, the Philippines has seen a surge of fake news posted on social media sites, and even with real information being a click away, there are online users who choose to believe fabricated stories. With fake news sowing confusion within media consumers, legitimate news sources are now discredited and getting attacks from readers. These incidents signal the post-truth era, in which readers tend to believe news that appeal to their emotions rather than those that contain facts and logical arguments. In the time of developing technology, how is fake news created and what are its implications on j
THE PREVIOUS academic year has passed and so has the period of student council elections. However, Thomasians are left to deal with the aftermath of the messy event. After abstentions left vacant the positions of president, vice president, treasurer, and auditor in the Central Student Council (CSC), and vice president-internal, secretary, and auditor in the Arts and Letters Student Council (ABSC), many saw a start of an era in which Thomasians properly scrutinize candidates before voting. So when the appeals on abstentions filed by former CSC presidential candidate Steven Grecia and ABSC vice president-internal bet Daniela Frigillana ultimately led to the disregard of “abstain” and proclamation of candidates with the most number of votes in the CSC elections, the two candidates e
HABITUALLY TOUCHING things like the floor and making sure that his toys were organized before going out were some of the certain compulsions that recent Behavioral Science (BES) graduate Heber O’Hara thought were normal in his life as a kid. However, growing up, he realized that his “usual” was unusual to other people. As he reached college, new compulsions due to consecutive life crises came such as making sure that he would sequentially check all the rooms before he left his house. This, piled with rapid and overwhelming thoughts, often made him tardy and mentally exhausted for class. Knowing “the world will not adjust” for him, he tried to combat his compulsions and was able to conceal these from people around him. “Sometimes, ‘yung touching the floor, ako tinatago ko. K