The University of Sto Tomas breaks its silence on the controversial alumni award to Communications Assistant Secretary Mocha Uson. This is after a UST alumni group questioned the said recognition to her. Apparently, it also appears that the UST Alumni Association Inc. (USTAAI) will revoke the award for the pro-Duterte blogger soon.
“The University of Santo Tomas takes pride in its graduates who have distinguished themselves in their chosen fields of expertise but the University wishes to clarify that the recognition given to Assistant Secretary Esther Margaux J. Uson came from the UST Alumni Association Inc. and not from the University,” UST said in a statement, Monday, January 22.
“The only award bestowed by the University to its alumni is the Outstanding Thomasian Alumni Awards granted to exceptional graduates after undergoing a stringent screening process. They are given only to alumni in all areas of studies who have instilled excellent core values academically and socially to the public,” the university added.
According to UST, the USTAA is a corporation separate from the university, and that it operates independently. In addition, it also has its own Board of Trustees, and UST does not interfere with the affairs of the all the alumni associations of the university. However, UST did not say whether it is in favor of Mocha Uson’s award or not.
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The USTAAI gave the Thomasian Alumni Award for Government Service to Mocha Uson last Sunday via a simple ceremony. According to USTAAI head Henry Tenedero, the only criteria to receive such award is for the receipt to be UST graduate and to be in government service. However, a UST alumni group is not happy for Mocha’s award.
“We, the Artlets Student Council, urge the UST-AAI to revoke the award given to Uson. We condemn any form of false information given by individuals such as herself,” the student council of the Faculty of Arts and Letters (ABSC) said on its official Facebook page late Sunday evening, adding that Mocha does not deserve to receive such award.
Meanwhile, Tenedro said that that they had sent out more than 40 invitations to various Thomasian alumni that are serving the government but only half of it responded to the call. Nevertheless, he noted that the UST-AAI will hold a special meeting this week to decide whether they should withdraw the award from Mocha Uson or not.
“I cannot decide on my own. What I’m planning is to check on their schedule and I will convene an emergency meeting to invite also ‘yung mga nagfi-feedback sa social media. Ako’y presidente lamang. Pero kung ang issue nga ay ano, sige. I’m willing, go ahead.” He told Inquirer, noting that he is willing to recall Mocha’s award anytime.
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