CHED: ‘Premature’ to punish UST, NU as show-cause order issued
MANILA, Philippines — The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) will issue a show-cause order to University of Santo Tomas and National University over their training camps held in Sorsogon and Laguna, respectively, amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Both the UST men’s basketball team and NU women’s volleyball team are in hot water for possible breach of quarantine protocols.
“The intention of the show-cause order is to ensure there is due process in the investigation because while we have received the written response of the university in our fact-finding, we have identified what possible, you know, CHED advisories that may have been violated,” CHED commissioner Prospero De Vera said during an online press conference by the Joint Administrative Order (JAO) group for sports.
De Vera said the purpose of the show-cause order to give the two universities a chance to explain themselves before a decision is to be made.
“That’s why the intention of the show-cause order is to allow them to answer. Let’s not talk about penalties at this point. We want to clarify based on the CHED advisories which were based on the IATF on the possible violations.”
Although, De Vera bared that “there was no denial” by both schools that training camps had been conducted and are “factual events,” De Vera stressed it is still “premature” to make conclusions at this point without the presence of a show-cause order.
“We cannot determine penalties until we are able to determine if violations were indeed done. So it’s premature now to say that CHED will punish UST or there are penalties awaiting UST. We will read the response to the show-cause order,” he said.
The case has also reached the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) with the two government agencies tasked to look deeper into the matter.
“Well, that will be the next step the due process requires that they are made to respond to whatever possible violations that’s why there is a show-cause order on the part of the commission,” De Vera said. “And that is why we are submitting the fact-finding to the department of justice and the DILG so that they can look into the alleged violations in the context of the IATF rules.”
“So as I said, it is too early to conclude because what has been completed is only the fact-finding potion. It’s up now to the DOJ later on to probe into this deeper.”