Several Facebook posts containing the same statements, most notably from the NTF-ELCAC (National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict) Facebook page (dated February 20, 2021) and its spokesperson and Undersecretary Lorraine Badoy (February 17, 2021), alleged that one of the UP College of Engineering’s alumni and honor graduates, Chad Booc, was “part of the CPP Party Branch unit in College of Engineering” in his student days in UP Diliman.
As with the maxim of law, the burden of proof always lies with the accuser. In this case, the obligation of providing sufficient evidence on whether there is a CPP Party Branch unit in the UP College of Engineering lies with the NTF-ELCAC, not with the UP College of Engineering. We challenge those who accuse to bring forth the evidence of their claim. In the case that they cannot provide such, they should face the full force of the law. That is how our justice system works, and perpetrators should be held accountable whenever they purport false and baseless claims, especially to the public.
We would like to remind everyone that apart from being a bastion of academic freedom, the University of the Philippines College of Engineering stands as a second home to thousands of youths whose minds and hearts we mold to help shape the nation. Any malicious accusation to the University and its legitimate units does not only damage Academic Freedom but also lessens our standing as one of the world’s best and the country’s leading universities – a partner of the state in molding honorable, excellent, and law-abiding citizens.
We must emphasize that the College has always supported the ideals of a democratically-elected government and that anyone who would want to come to the College will be welcomed. However, any action that they take must always be in accordance with the rule of law. We do not condone illegal activities on our campus. As we mentioned in a previous statement, Academic Freedom is at the very heart of the UP College of Engineering’s operations. We continue to protect and fight to uphold the rights and values of Academic Freedom in the university with or without the abrogation. We will not allow any entity to insinuate evidence-less claims to tarnish our distinguished global institution without due repercussions. We continue to condemn any action that represses academic freedom and join the UP community’s collective voice that calls for the immediate release of illegally detained individuals.