Monday, May 02, 2005

Great Homework and Transparency

The posters of comments to our previous article "Compare and contrast..." have delivered a brilliant and insightful discussion on how bankruptcy procedures work in the Philippines. All readers of this blog owe it to themselves to go through the contributions.

TLS's thoughtful analysis of the YGC dark intentions behind the rehab plan is indeed very good. At the risk of doing injustice to TLS's piece, he or she makes the point that a rehab plan is

a) for the benefit of the planholders and not for PPI's shareholder;
b) any rehab plan requires prior discussion and consent from the planholders;
c) the company to be rehabilitated has to show viable proof that it can work towards making the planholders whole again;
b) as it stands today, the rehab plan works against the planholder.

Since the rehab plan violates all of the above prerequisites, TLS argues that the RTC should not have even entertained the PPI petition in the first place.

TLS argues that the entire gameplan for YGC seems to be to have us fall for the trap of arguing about the rehab's merits (and have the issue tied up in court for years) rather than demanding that the RTC do his proper duty and throw it out for lack of merit in the first place.

This is troubling as the spotlight now falls on how the RTC judge in question and we now have to concern ourselves on how he will choose to conduct himself...It may be worthwhile for the readers to contribute information on the judge's background so that we may better understand his judicial actuations are guided...

What is truly remarkable is how the options and tactics available to the coalition can be discussed with such candor and transparency. On the part of the coalition, there is no need for subterfuge, deception, or backdoor dealings. We only need to tell the facts. The discovery process is under way and every passing day gives all of us a better picture of the truth.

What is also surprising is how the conventional media are now regular visitors to this website to get updates on the Pacific Plans fiasco. Could there be a lingering suspicion and fear on their part that the sun may have already begun to set on the unfortunate practice of envelopmental journalism as small voices such as ours now have an undefeatable means for getting the truth out?

By all accounts, this controversy should have already been dead since SOP for moneyed entities mired in controversy is to "bury the story" by pulling out all the stops with broadsheets, TV, and radio.

We are just about to start week 3 (has it only been that short?) with this weblog and the coalition gains strength with each passing day. It definitely is a confusing and uncomfortable time for disinformation specialists who are steeped in the ways of conventional media but are now being overwhelmed by the network of several thousand planholders thinking and acting as one. (The YGC spinmeisters are even trying to suggest that we are entertaining politicians with an axe to grind...sorry but that is really lame, we're not biting into that one. Politics be hanged, we only work for our own agenda that agenda is simple...all we want this searing summer of 2005 is for our benefits to be paid out in full!)

AND SO, FOR FRIENDS AND FOES ALIKE, WELCOME TO THE POWER OF THE INTERNET.

Go PEP Coalition, Beat YGC!!!

27 Comments:

At Monday, May 02, 2005 3:32:00 PM, Anonymous Joselino said...

I work in a large financial institution (non ygc). Big companies will need a lot of expert financial advise from external companies to undertake a major decision like this. I am certain that Pacific Plans got financial advice from experts and this will be the weakest point in our case.

How can we shout fraud if they have recommendations from multiple,external, and reputable financial experts showing that Pacific is indeed having liquidity problems and recommending this action? What if Pacific Plans will show us documents endorsed by financial experts that this they have liquidity problems and this is the fairest approach to protect all planholders?

Ask your friends in the financial industry, several financial institutions were approached by Pacific Plans months and months ago.

This is something that we may not be prepared to response to.

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 4:04:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the previous poster:

Maybe what we need to keep in mind is the timeline. WHEN did they approach the fin'l institutions? Before...or after...they transferred out their assets to Lifetime Plans?

Remember, they created Lifetime Plans last year pa (was it August?). Anytime after that, if they went for financial advice, what else would any fin'l institution say but that they needed rehabilitation!!!!

What we all should take note is that our bone of contention here is....WE BELIEVE PACIFIC PLANS HAD ENOUGH FUNDS, WAS PROFITABLE, AND ABLE TO PAY ALL PLANHOLDERS BEFORE THEY DID THEIR MAGIC WITH LIFETIME PLANS. Let all the assets be returned to Pacific Plans as it was before Lifetime Plans first before we talk about whether they were in bad shape or not.

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 4:04:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Joselino,

Not to worry about responses to claims of illiquidity. There are indeed audit trails that have been identified in several institutions that will show that there is simulated illiquidity at Pacific Plans. (Read up on TLS discussion on bankruptcy)

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 4:07:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Joselino,

Nobody is perfect. Not even the combined brain power of Yuchengco's advisers.

Were they able to foresee that a competitor like Prudential Plans, who has more traditional educational plans will operate profitably?

Were they able to foresee that they will also antagonize their own employees who are likewise holders of traditional educational plans? I know of a PPI agent who is still holding over 15 trad edu plan for investment purposes.

Did they assume that Pacific planholders will act just like CAP planholders and not become organized?

The strongest point in our case is our LOVE for our children. With this love, both human and divine assistance will overflow.

I am definitely sure that this was never part of their financial assumption.

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 4:11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's also important to go back several years to see how our trust fund was managed...or mismanaged.

If it was used as a cash cow to finance other endeavors of those with vested interests, under less than armslength arrangements, ....then it won't be surprising if our current trust fund can no longer sustain the claims now and in the future.

The board of directors and officers of Pacific Plans from the 1990s to now have to show that prudence and integrity of the highest order were exercised in the handling of our trust funds.

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 5:42:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi! I'm a student at UP Diliman and for our STS class, we are doing a presentation about the current situation of the preneed industry specifically focusing on the issue about CAP and PPI. Upon doing research, me and my groupmates have stumbled on this blog of yours and we found it very informative. We are wondering if it would be possible if we can attend one of your meetings or meet with some of you to give us more information regarding the issue. We believe it will not only help us deliver a well-researched presentation but it will also help our classmates (not to mention our professor) be more enlightened. This is for our summer class and presentations are due anytime next week, so this is rather abrupt. Anyways, we are still hoping you could help us. Thank you very much!

Michelle Buhay
angelmicky21@yahoo.com

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 6:56:00 PM, Blogger Sef said...

I have an article on my blog that might interest the visitors here. I would like to invite everyone to read and comment on it.

Meanwhile, I hope there are fewer Anonymous commenters here as it is difficult to track the opinions as to which is coming from whom. Anyway, it is easy to use even a pseudonym, and any name will do.

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 6:57:00 PM, Blogger Sef said...

my blog is at:

www.alternation101.blogspot.com

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 7:46:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i got this from the YGC ONE site.
its the official publication of the YGC group of companies:


PPI Sales Up, Despite Industry Slowdown

Bucking the general trend, field reports have indicated that Pacific Plans (PPI) collections for the month of January has produced a record-breaking collection of P224 million -- the highest in the company’s 36-year history -- and this despite the slumping sales the other industry players have experienced due to war jitters.

Sales of pre-need companies in general fell 21.82% in January to 2.9 billion pesos in gross contract price from 3.7 billion pesos a year earlier, documents from the Securities and Exchange Commission showed. The number of plans sold in January also fell 23.88% to 44,913 from 59,006 a year earlier.


SO WHAT GIVES???
NALULUGI BA ANG PPI OR WHAT??

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 8:10:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

it might be true that we might have the right argument and that the law maybe on our side, but most of us know that justice in this country is excruciatingly slow, the mere delay means great injustice to us planholder, the judge need not make any decision, a mere delay would mean victory for ppi since until the stay order is lifted, ppi is free from any obligation, they will just wait for us to lose our steam and interest, we therefore needs to continue our pressure against ygc and at the same time hope that the court will be there to give justice to us planholder. remember even if the court rules in our favor, ppi will elevate their case to the court of appeal, then up to the supreme court, so by the time the supreme court will rule on our case, our children would have lose all the opprtunities that would have come from a good education, and the damages on their future irreversible

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 8:28:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here is the first part of Honesto General's column in the Business SEction of the Inquirer:

THE BROUHAHA brewing around Pacific Plans is getting curiouser and curiouser.

Pacific Plans was set up in 1966 as a wholly owned subsidiary of Great Pacific Life. On Aug. 12, 2004, Lifetime Plans was created as a wholly owned subsidiary of Pacific Plans. On Aug. 20, 2004, GPL Holdings bought into Lifetime Plans. On Sept. 9, 2004, Exemplar Holdings was organized, with P100,000 initial paid-up, as a wholly owned subsidiary of GPL Holdings. On Jan. 25, 2005, Exemplar bought into Lifetime Plans.

This web of interlocking ownerships and directorships must have been stitched together by topnotch lawyers. Simple mortals like me can only stand in shock and awe at all the paper shuffling.

Pacific's profitable portfolio of fixed-value plans was transferred to Lifetime, at no cost to Lifetime. Normally, if a firm takes over a profitable portfolio of business, it has to pay a premium. But no premium was paid. Lifetime got a whole bunch of profitable business absolutely for free. Pacific got nothing for its generosity.

Not only that, the party of the first part in a pre-need contract told the party of the second part that there will be a new party of the first part, and the party of the second part has no say over the matter. In the insurance business, the insurer can get out of the contract by canceling the policy, but the insured, by law, is given enough time to transfer the policy to a company of his choice.

The portfolio of open-ended, or traditional, plans was left at Pacific. The plan holders have been told that they will get only tuition support this year (about 30 percent of what is actually due). Payments will resume on 2010, but the plan holders will earn a measly 7 percent a year until then. A life insurance company does not tell the insured, after paying premiums for years, that his endowment policy will be changed to term--and the insured has no say over the matter.

Incredibly, the Securities and Exchange Commission blessed the transfer (the Insurance Commission would never have allowed this), and a regional trial court okayed the suspension of payments.

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 10:27:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the point of Joselino is that it will be very difficult to pursue Pacific Plans from the fraud angle if they consulted financial experts before the spin-off. Because if Pacific Plans did, and multiple,external, and credible experts recommended the spin-off, will we be going after their financial advisers? Also, this means that their liquidity problems will be proven correct.

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 10:33:00 PM, Blogger Punzi said...

I made this comment in Sef's blog.

PPI planholders should also scrutinize how the transfer of the so-called "profitable" plans were made from PPI to Lifetime. Since they are supposedly separate and distinct companies, the transfer should have been made "for value" or "for valuable consideration." This means, Lifetime should have "paid" PPI something in exchange for those "juicy" plans. Was it for cash? Marketable securities? Lifetime shares?

If there is no valuable consideration or the transfer was made for Lifetime shares, a case can be made to go after Lifetime or any other PPI stockholder, since they used this "fictitious" transfer to defraud its creditors (namely, the claimants of the so-called "loser plans").

If this is the case, the separate juridical personality of Lifetime, its stockholders and PPI stockholders can be disregarded and the claimants can go after the above-mentioned directly. This called, technically "piercing the veil of corporate entity."

Also, if there was a sham transfer, the SEC may also be liable for allowing it.

Again, my two cents.


Hope this also helps.

 
At Monday, May 02, 2005 10:57:00 PM, Anonymous Thinker said...

From www.partyofenlightenedplanholders.blogspot.com . Their comment is making me really think.

Anonymous said...
Excerpts from the PEP Coaliton web site:

1) "Incredibly, the Securities and Exchange Commission blessed the transfer (the Insurance Commission would never have allowed this), and a regional trial court okayed the suspension of payments. " (legal perspective)

And Coalition is asking SEC/Courts to investigate something that they approved?

2) . "remember even if the court rules in our favor, ppi will elevate their case to the court of appeal, then up to the supreme court, so by the time the supreme court will rule on our case, our children would have lose all the opprtunities that would have come from a good education, and the damages on their future irreversible " (time perspective)

3) Don't forgot also section XV . (contractual obligation perspective)

4) "How can we shout fraud if they have recommendations from multiple,external, and reputable financial experts showing that Pacific is indeed having liquidity problems and recommending this action?". (financial/fraud perspectve)


From a contractual,financial, legal and even time perspective, supporting the rehab plan is the only thing that makes sense.

I believe it is time that we organize ourselves. We should convene a meeting this weekend in support of the rehab plan. Go Party of Enligtened People!

 
At Tuesday, May 03, 2005 12:54:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How easy is it for our principles to be compromised?

The test is NOW...and our children are witnesses to what we ARE, what we DO, HOW we go about facing this crisis and WHY we do what we do. We want to teach our kids values? This is it! The ultimate test of WHERE our values lie.

If we just give up and take the rehab plan, disadvantageous as it is, we are telling our kids that when the going gets rough, just give in because fighting the corrupt giant is useless. From other posts here, I understand that once approved, there is NO NEGOTIATION ANYMORE as far as the rehab plan is concerned. So the fight is NOW, NOT AFTER the rehab plan is approved. Otherwise, no choice na but to just implement what the plan says. May voice ba tayo sa formulation ng plan? WALA! The article of Jarius Bondoc even quoted a highly confidential document from PPI na naka-set na for June 4 ang approval ng rehab plan. The stage is set, as far as PPI is concerned. Do we let the show go on?

This coalition is giving us hope but only when we stand together. Why are we taking the crumbs thrown at us? I have unavailed plans, more than the plans I have already availed. I should be interested in trying to work for the best solution not just now, but in the future because even if I am not around anymore, my kids should finish with a good education. But I also want them to be strong in spirit when the going gets rough.

Kaya nga napakadali ng corruption to prosper in this nation because we have learned just to sit idly by. We have forgotten how to fight for what is morally right and good. When the odds are stacked against us, sumusuko na lang tayo. Crab mentality pa...we bring each other down. Is this what we want our children to be...like us now?

If a giant can do this to us (rob our children of their future, breach a legal contract, pay people to be fall guys/"shock absorbers", bring on the spin doctors to sweeten their image, use legal loopholes and influence regulatory agencies/court/media to their advantage) and we meekly accept this without a whimper...THEN WE DESERVE IT!

 
At Tuesday, May 03, 2005 10:05:00 AM, Anonymous marc said...

HMMMM, my take on the previous post:

1) "Incredibly, the Securities and Exchange Commission blessed the transfer (the Insurance Commission would never have allowed this), and a regional trial court okayed the suspension of payments. " (legal perspective)

And Coalition is asking SEC/Courts to investigate something that they approved?

ANSWER: YES, BECAUSE THE SEC SAID THAT POTENTIALLY, THERE WAS MISREPRESENTATION AND THEY ARE UNCOVERING NEW INFORMATION THAT MAY MATERIALLY CHANGE THE NATURE OF WHAT THEY HAD APPROVED.

2) . "remember even if the court rules in our favor, ppi will elevate their case to the court of appeal, then up to the supreme court, so by the time the supreme court will rule on our case, our children would have lose all the opprtunities that would have come from a good education, and the damages on their future irreversible " (time perspective)

ANSWER: IN OTHER WORDS, WHEN YOU ARE BEING RAPED, LIE DOWN AND ENJOY IT? THAT'S NOT AN OPTION!

3) Don't forgot also section XV . (contractual obligation perspective)

ANSWER: THIS HAS ALREADY BEEN PREVIOUSLY ANSWERED, EVEN PACIFIC PLANS BACKED OUT OF THE ARGUMENT

4) "How can we shout fraud if they have recommendations from multiple,external, and reputable financial experts showing that Pacific is indeed having liquidity problems and recommending this action?". (financial/fraud perspectve)

ANSWER: SIMILAR TO SEC CASE, IN THE FACE OF MISREPRESENTATION AND DECEIPT, NONE OF THESE ADVISE-SEEKING CAN BE TAKEN TO MEAN GOOD FAITH IN THE FACE OF DOCUMENTED EVIDENCE OF BAD FAITH.

From a contractual,financial, legal and even time perspective, supporting the rehab plan is the only thing that makes sense.

ANSWER: From a contractual,financial, legal and even time perspective, supporting the rehab plan is NOT the only thing that makes sense. In fact, IT DOESN'T MAKE SENSE AT ALL WHEN IT ONLY GIVES PPI ALL THE MORE REASON TO AVOID PAYING THEIR OBLIGATIONS OVER TIME! TALK ABOUT TIME PERSPECTIVE!

(See tls's discussion)

 
At Tuesday, May 03, 2005 12:37:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

when i say that our case would take a long time to be finally resolved, i am trying to imply that although our arguments may be strong enough, we must continue our pressure against ygc, that is the only way we can win this case but it doesn't mean that we should not fight in the legal aspect, the fight should be on all front to show this powerful people that our rights cannot easily be trampled upon, we cannot rely on the government alone, we will be the one to make the difference

 
At Tuesday, May 03, 2005 4:36:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

FROM COCKTALES:

"the political opposition, through a Joseph Estrada lawyer working behind the scenes, has even latched on to the anti-Pacific Plans movement to even up score against the tycoon for his having funded EDSA People Power I and especially EDSA People Power II groups."

Tell me, this is not true. With the entry of Chiz Escudero asking for the filling of estafa against PPI, this sure sounds possible. If yes, it's goodbye to the coalition.

 
At Tuesday, May 03, 2005 8:21:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The best revenge you can have on the yuchengcos is if you boycott all their companies--lifetime plans, RCBC, Malayan Insurance and GrepaLife among others.

 
At Tuesday, May 03, 2005 8:38:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

there is FRAUD!!!!

take a look at how Pacific Plans got their Napocor Bonds. They borrowed 150Million Dollars from RCBC, used 250million dollars in collateral, to protect RCBC's interests.

For what? 50million worth of NAPOCOR bonds!

If you compute the dollar-denominated interest on this dollar-denominated loan, trad planholders would receive NOTHING IN 2010!!!

We are not even talking about the 120million pesos a MONTH that the Yuchengcos shell out for the INTEREST PAYMENT ALONE for RCBC PLAZA!! That's why RCBC is for SALE!! No takers!! Ask any sensible banker around if this is true!

these are the REASONS why the Yuchengcos are damning the torpedoes, and moving full steam ahead with their supposed REHAB Plans!!!

The YUchengcos DO NOT HAVE any choice whatsoever! And their EQUITY in RCBC, with the MASSIVE withdrawals that they are experiencing, is thinning every minute that passes by!!

 
At Tuesday, May 03, 2005 8:58:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

is it true that its everyone for him/her-self at ygc and family? that after 'raping' pacific, they are raping the other companies under ygc - each to his/her own ?

ygc insiders - enlighten us !

fartyofenglightenedpanholders - its just a matter of time same thing that happened to ppi will spill over to lifetime

 
At Tuesday, May 03, 2005 9:06:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

how can you trust a ROBBER BARON not to touch your FIXED-VALUE PLANS??

a thief will always be a THIEF!

get out of Lifetime now, to avoid a LIFETIME of REGRET and HEARTACHES!

 
At Wednesday, May 04, 2005 12:10:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear joselino;

Am a financial specialist not connected with YGC. You mean to tell me if I gave them wrong advice and they took it, will cease their obligations for such stupidity?

Perchance such stupid advice as investing the trust fund money to a badly mismanaged and losing-heavily company such as NAPOCOR?

It is the management of such trust funds that the planholders have trusted upon them due to the YGC mystique! It is therefore there responsibility to live up to the spirit of TRUST and cover their obligations no matter the mistakes of their own doing!

Following stupid advice from so called "specialist" does not remove your obligation- be it legally or morally of mismanagement or perhaps in this case complex with pre-meditated fraud with the filling of a parallel company in the name of Lifetime Plans!

How simple it is to try to wring out of their obligation, if I follow your reasoning-DUH?

Iba na talaga mga pakalat ni Helen!

 
At Wednesday, May 04, 2005 2:11:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Angelique Lazo of DZAR 1026AM will be interviewing some PEP Coalition mothers tomorrow at around 8:45 a.m.

 
At Wednesday, May 04, 2005 4:37:00 PM, Anonymous TLS said...

What did PPI do WRONG? Let us count the ways.

1. PPI stopped selling these plans in 1992. That was one move that proved critical because it was able to contain the injury. The more of these plans a company has, the worse off it is.
FIRST OF ALL, TRADITIONAL PLANS ARE NOT THE PROBLEM. WHILE IT IS TRUE THAT TUITION FEES WERE DEREGULATED, WHAT NEEDS TO BE ADDRESSED IS THE REVENUE-COST MODEL USED. (Ta-tagalogin ko para madaling maintindihan) DAPAT ISINA-AYOS NG PPI/YUCHENGCO ANG COST MODEL NILA (IBIG SABIHIN, IBINABA DAPAT ANG COMMISSION STRUCTURE AT OPERATING EXPENSES PARA MAS MALAKI ANG MAILAGAY SA TRUST FUND. EVEN IF THEY HAD CONTINUED SELLING, HINDI PROBLEMA IYON KUNG IA-ADJUST ANG COST MODEL. ALSO, THE REVENUE MODEL OR PRICING COULD BE ADJUSTED TO FURTHER COMPENSATE FOR HIGHER TUITION FEES.
ALSO, PPI IN ALL THOSE PAST YEARS HAD HIGH OPEX (OPERATING COST TO REVENUES) RATIOS. THEY SHOULD HAVE REDUCED FIXED OPERATING EXPENSES ALSO, I.E., REDUCED BRANCHES, MANPOWER, ETC. BECAUSE THIS WOULD HAVE SAVED MILLIONS IN THE PAST YEARS.
IN ANY CASE, THEY HAD NO TRUST FUND OR ARL DEFICIENCY UNTIL LAST YEAR SO EVEN FOR THE TRADITIONAL PLANS, WALANG PROBLEMA NA SERBISYOHAN ITO, EXCEPT FOR THE LIQUIDITY PROBLEM NA GAWA-GAWA LANG NILA.

2. PPI has not exercised its right under Section XV of its contract. It could have taken legal cover from this but so far it has not.

THERE IS NO PROVISION IN THE PRE-NEED CONTRACT THAT EXPRESSLY STATES THAT TUITION FEES MUST BE REGULATED OR BE KEPT UNDER THE 10% OR WHATEVER TUITION FEE CAP. WALA! IT DOES NOT EXPLICITLY STATE THAT THE SERVICING OF THE BENEFITS TO PLANHOLDERS IS ANCHORED ON A FIXED, PROJECTED INCREASE IN TUITION FEES OF SO MUCH PERCENT. WALA! THE CONTRACT IS SILENT ON THIS BUT EXPLICITLY STATES THAT PPI WILL PAY OUT THE BENEFITS/TUITION FEES OF THE PLANHOLDER FOR THE SELECTED COURSE OR EDUCATION LEVEL OF THE NOMINEE. IYON MERON! THIS SECTION XV IS TO BE INTERPRETED ONLY IN EVENTS THAT ACTUALLY PREVENT PPI FROM PAYING OUT BENEFITS NOT EVENTS THAT MAKE IT DIFFICULT FOR PPI TO PAY OUT BENEFITS. TUITION FEE DEREGULATION MAY HAVE MADE IT MORE DIFFICULT FOR PPI TO MEET AND SERVE ITS OBLIGATIONS. BUT IT CERTAINLY DID NOT AND DOES NOT PREVENT PPI FROM MEETING AND SERVING ITS OBLIGATIONS. MALAKING DIPERENSYA ANG PANUKALANG BATAS NA IPAGBABAWAL ANG PAGSAGOT SA KARAPAT-DAPAT NA BENEPISYO SA PANUKALANG BATAS NA MAARING MAGPAHIRAP SA KOMPANYANG TULAD NG PPI NA SAGUTIN ANG KARAPAT-DAPAT NA BENEPISYO.

3. PPI put in P1.5 billion to pay the runaway tuition. This is one reason it paid in full all tuition claims in the past 14 years. It has so far sent to school 56,000 scholars and at most 18,000 are not yet availing themselves of the benefits-a modest number by industry standards mainly because of No. 1.

HINDI NAMAN ITO KAHANGA-HANGA DAHIL IYON NAMAN ANG DAPAT LANG NILA GAWIN DAHIL MAY OBLIGASYON SILA AT KATUNGKULILN NA HARAPIN ANG PAGSERBISYO SA PLANHOLDERS. REMEMBER, NEGOSYO ITO. KUNG MALULUGI ANG STOCKHOLDERS NG PPI, PASENSIYA NA LANG. PERO DAPAT HARAPIN ANG LEGAL, FINANCIAL, FIDUCIARY OBLIGATIONS (we’re not even citing the moral and social obligations). HINDI MAARING SABIHIN TAMA ANG ISANG AKSYON DAHIL MARAMI NA ANG “NASERBISYOHAN” AT KONTI NA LANG ANG “MASASAKTAN”. WE ARE NOT TALKING OF NUMBER WEIGHTING AND AVERAGES HERE. KUNG HINDI NABIGAY NG PPI ANG KARAPAT-DAPAT NA BENEPISYO SA KAHIT ISANG PLANHOLDER, MALI AT WALANG MASASABING TAGUMPAY ITO. YOU FAIL JUST ONE PLANHOLDER AND THAT MEANS YOU ARE A FAILURE IN YOUR BUSINESS BECAUSE THAT IS THE WHOLE POINT OF THE BUSINESS.

4. PPI sold instead fixed-value plans, where benefits are defined. PPI sold more than 400,000 of these. But it eventually had to put these in a separate company because the 34,000 open-ended plans continued to be voracious eaters of corporate funds. It separated the two types of plans through a spin-off, a perfectly legal action that is done all over the world. Without this move, the whole body of fixed-value and open-ended plans would have suffered. So why not take steps to keep the 400,000 healthy?
SEE MY REPLY TO NO.3. FIRST, NOTICE THE LANGUAGE – “open-ended plans are voracious eaters of corporate funds”. HINDI NA NILA SINABING “TRUST FUNDS” KASI MALI IYON. THE OPEN-ENDED PLANS HAVE THEIR OWN TRUST FUND WITH NO DEFICIENCIES. SO DO THE FIXED-VALUE PLANS. NOW, BECAUSE HINDI NA NAGBEBENTA NG OPEN-ENDED PLANS, ANG PANGSERBISYO NITO IS TAKEN FROM ITS OWN TRUST FUND, NOT FROM THE TRUST FUND FOR FIXED-VALUE PLANS.
NOW, THEY’VE PROJECTED THAT IF TUITION FEES CONTINUE TO RISE, WITH THE LOW INVESTMENT YIELDS, THE TRUST FUND OF THE OPEN-ENDED PLANS MAY (EMPHASIS ON “MAY” KASI FUTURE ITO – WALA PANG CERTAINTY NA MANGYAYARI) NOT BE ENOUGH TO SERVICE FUTURE AVAILMENTS.
SO, AND THIS IS THE TRUTH, SA SALES NG PAGBENTA NILA NG FIXED-VALUE PLANS, THEY MUST NOW REDUCE THEIR PROFIT MARGIN AND ADD TO THE OPEN-ENDED TRUST FUNDS OR EVEN USE PART OF THEIR PROFIT MARGIN TO SERVE CURRENT AVAILMENTS. THE TRUST FUND FOR FIXED-VALUE PLANS IS SAFE AND INTACT.
SO MALIWANAG NA HINDI KINUKUHAAN ANG TRUST FUND NG FIXED-VALUE PLANS. ANG NAGYAYARI AY NABABAWASAN ANG KITA OR PROFIT MARGIN NG PPI/YUCHENGCO PARA MADAGDAGAN ANG “POSIBLENG” FUTURE KAKULANGAN SA TRUST FUND NG OPEN-ENDED PLANS (TANDAAN DIN NA UNTIL LAST YEAR, WALANG DEFICIENCIES SA TRUST FUND AT ARL ANG PPI).
SO KAILANGAN NILANG BAWASAN ANG COMMISSION SA AHENTE, O BAWASAN ANG OPERATING EXPENSES NILA (SWELDO’T BONUSES NG TOP MANAGEMENT, NO. OF BRANCHES, ETC.) PARA MATUGONAN ANG PAGDAGDAG SA TRUST FUND PARA SA OPEN-ENDED.
SO, IT IS SIMPLY FALSE AND A LIE TO SAY THAT THE WHOLE BODY OF
FIXED-VALUE AND OPEN-ENDED PLANS WILL SUFFER. NO!!! WHAT WILL SUFFER IS YUNG PROFIT MARGIN NILA ON FIXED-VALUE PLAN SALES.

5. Even before this, PPI wrote many schools to buy thousands of scholarships for its beneficiaries and pay in advance the whole four-or five-year courses. Not one agreed to the offer of a 10-percent annual increase. PPI pleaded. It failed.

AGAIN, THIS IS THE SAME AS OFFERING THE BUYBACK OF PLANS FROM PLANHOLDERS OR OFFERING PLANHOLDERS TO MAKE LOANS ON THEIR PLANS. ITO AY MGA STRATEHIYA PARA BAWASAN ANG KAUKULANG OBLIGASYON. LEHITIMO NAMAN ITONG MGA STRATEGY NA GANITO. PERO, AGAIN, PASENSIYA NA LANG AT HINDI GUSTONG TANGGAPIN NG IBANG SCHOOLS O PLANHOLDERS ITO. AGAIN, LET’S FOCUS ON WHAT PPI DID WRONG AND SHOULD HAVE DONE (see no. 4 reply). THEY MISMANAGED OPERATIONS AND EVEN DECLARED DIVIDENDS IN EARLIER YEARS. THEY EXPANDED BRANCHES AND INVESTED IN DUBIOUS INSTRUMENTS.

6. PPI bought back plans but the secondary market, which it has no control of, has brought prices to unreasonable levels.

AGAIN, SIMPLENG PANLOLOKO ULI ITO. SALES IN THE SECONDARY MARKET BOOST NEW BUSINESS OR INITIAL COLLECTIONS BROUGHT IN (ICBI), THE SALES INDICATOR FOR PRE-NEED COMPANIES. SO IT WAS TO PPI’S BENEFIT TO KEEP THE SECONDARY MARKET ALIVE. ALSO, HINDI NAMAN MABUBUHAY ANG SECONDARY MARKET WITHOUT PPI’S CONSENT SINCE ALL THESE SECONDARY SALES WOULD HAVE ADMINISTRATIVE PROCESSING FROM PPI.

7. After the spin-off, PPI was left with the 34,000 plans. It had looked for ways to limit liability on the open-ended plans by offering to swap them with fixed-value plans. But time was not on its side. Enrollment was creeping in fast. It had more than P300 million in cash left and $52-million worth of government-guaranteed bonds that would mature in 2010. Of the 34,000 plans, 16,000 are due for enrollment; the rest, the majority, would be due to file in the coming years and obviously would be disadvantaged if assets are liquidated now. Something must be left for them.

AGAIN, THIS JUST REITERATES THE MISMANAGEMENT THAT PPI/YUCHENGCO DID. HINDI LANG P300 MILLION ANG PERA NG PPI BAGO ILIPAT ANG LAHAT SA LIFETIME. THE $52 MILLION-“WORTHLESS” OF GOVERNMENT BONDS WAS A DUBIOUS SELF-SRVING INTER-COMPANY TRANSACTION ITSELF, NOT AT ALL FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE PLANHOLDERS. WE ARE NOT TALKING ABOUT LIQUIDATING ASSETS FOR THE AVAILING AND NON-AVAILING PLANHOLDERS. WE ARE TALKING ABOUT PPI/YUCHENGCO MAKING AMENDS AND FIGURING OUT A WAY, TO THE POINT OF SELLING ASSETS, CLOSING DOWN BRANCHES, REDUCING THEIR PROFIT MARGIN, HAVING STOCKHOLDERS INFUSE MORE EQUITY, TO SERVICE CONTRACT- AND LEGALLY-STIPULATED BENEFITS OF AVAILING AND NON-AVAILING PLANHOLDERS.

8. So PPI went to court early this month. While it sought for suspension of payment, it asked the court to allow it to use its remaining P341 million in cash to support the tuition needs of the 16,000. PPI knew it had to help pay the tuition because it is enrollment time.

NO. PPI/YUCHENGCO PRE-EMPTED THE SEC AND FAST-TRACKED ITS PETITION FOR SUSPENSION OF PAYMENTS AND PETITION FOR REHAB (THOSE ARE TWO SEPARATE LEGAL ACTIONS) TO FURTHER “PRETEND” THAT ITS HANDS WERE TIED AND HAD NO MORE FUNDS BECAUSE IT KNEW IT HAD TO PAY FULL BENEFITS OF PLANHOLDERS BECAUSE IT IS ENROLLMENT TIME.

9. PPI proposed to return all the premium payments plus seven percent net compounded interest to the 18,000 non-availing plan holders. For the 16,000 who are already availing themselves of the benefits, PPI offered tuition support, which is part of the discounted balance of remaining "availments," plus seven percent net compounded interest that they are entitled to. All these depend on the court approving its rehabilitation plan.

SIEMPRE, KAPAG GUSTO MONG MAKALUSOT, KAILANGAN MAY IBIGAY KANG “PAMPALUBAG-LOOB”. SO PPI/YUCHENGCO ALREADY COMPUTED THAT GIVING THESE PREMIUM PAYMENTS PLUS 7% NET COMPUNDED INTEREST WOULD NOT HURT THEIR POCKETS. AGAIN, THIS PROPOSAL IS BASELESS O WALANG BASEHAN KASI NGA, KUNG HINDI NAGLOKO AT NAGLIPAT NG EARNING ASSETS SA LIFETIME AT HINDI NAGFILE NG REHAB AT SUSPENSION OF PAYMENTS, WALA LAHAT ITONG “PROBLEMA” NA HINDI DAW “KAKAYANIN” NG PPI NA BAYARAN ANG FUTURE AVAILMENTS.

10. If some opponents succeed in blocking the rehabilitation, PPI would likely be forced to Square One with all the problems and no solution, or into liquidation and sell its $52-million worth of bonds before maturity. If sold now, these bonds would fetch P550 million less than if they are redeemed by 2010. This loss, all plan holders must absorb.

BLOCKING THE REHABILITATION PLAN DOES NOT MEAN NA MAPIPILITAN ANG PPI/YUCHENGCO NA ILIQUIDATE ANG NAPOCOR BOND (NA, FOR ALL INTENTS AND PURPOSES, IS WORTH NOTHING ANYWAY SINCE NAPOCOR IS A LOSING GOCC ENTITY). BLOCKING THE REHAB PLAN MEANS PPI/YUCHENGCO WILL HAVE TO (see nos. 4 and 7 above) FIND OTHER MEANS TO FUND PPI. IF THAT MEANS RESTRUCTURING LIFETIME AND PPI TO RETURN ALL EARNING ASSETS TO PPI, THEN SO BE IT. IF THAT MEANS RCBC AND GREPA WILL HAVE TO LEND OR HAVE INTER-COMPANY ADVANCES, SO BE IT. IF THE YUCHENGCOS WILL HAVE TO SELL REAL ESTATE PROPERTIES, CLOSE BRANCHES, REDUCE OPERATING EXPENSES, SO BE IT. BOTTOMLINE IS, HINDI ANG PLANHOLDERS ARE DAPAT MANAGOT SA MISMANAGEMENT NA GINAWA NG PPI/YUCHENGCO.

PPI has done more as an exercise of its obligation, legal and moral, to its plan holders. When the time bomb ticks its last, PPI will be remembered as the company that offered to return the plan holders' money plus more while it still could, and took a lot of beating for a misunderstood but correct decision.

NO. RIGHT NOW, ITS ALREADY LOOKED AT AS THE COMPANY THAT RENEGED ON ITS OBLIGATIONS AND IS BRINGING DOWN NOT ONLY THE PRE-NEED INDUSTRY BUT EVEN AFFECTING ALSO THE LIFE INSURANCE INDUSTRY FOR A WELL-UNDERSTOOD (TRANSPARENTLY MALICIOUS AND FRAUDULENT) AND INCORRECT DECISION. EVERY SINGLE DAY THAT PASSES NA GANITO ANG SITUASYON ONLY REINFORCES THAT. ACTUALLY, ALL GARCIA. TECSON, ET.AL., AND PPI/YUCHENGCO ARE TRYING TO DO NOW IS TO DESPERATELY SAVE FACE AND JUSTIFY THEIR ACTIONS. BUT BELIEVE ME, WALA SILANG KAKAMPI. EVEN IN THE PRE-NEED INDUSTRY. GALIT SA PPI/YUCHENGCO ANG LAHAT FOR MAKING A VERY STUPID AND SELFISH MOVE. RENEGING ON OBLIGATIONS, KAHIT GAANO KAHIRAP GAMPANAN, IS NEVER ACCEPTABLE. BREAKING THE “TRUST” IN A BUSINESS BUILT FULLY ON “TRUST” IS SIMPLY THE BEST REASON TO SAY THAT THESE SUPPOSED “STEWARDS OF OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY” SHOULD NOT BE ALLOWED TO CONTINUE ON MISMANAGING THE FUTURE OF PLANHOLDERS’ CHILDREN.

TLS

 
At Monday, May 09, 2005 9:49:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

College Education in Crisis

Five years from now, the Philippines’ tertiary
education will likely face a crisis if the current
trends in college enrolment and dropouts will
continue. Due to continuing tuition hikes more and
more students enrolled in private colleges and
universities find themselves either dropping out or
forced to transfer to state institutions.

By Carl Marc Ramota
Contributed to Bulatlat
(First of two parts)

Five years from now, the Philippines’ tertiary
education will likely face a crisis if the current
trends in college enrolment and dropouts will
continue.

Citing recent studies, the Anak ng Bayan Youth Party
revealed over the weekend that due to continuing
tuition hikes more and more students enrolled in
private colleges and universities find themselves
either dropping out or forced to transfer to state
institutions.

But the state universities and colleges (SUCs) are
plagued by similar problems: Not only are they few now
and their enrolment quotas limited, they are also
haunted by increases in tuition and other fees thus
forcing many state scholars to leave.

As a result, Raymond Palatino, vice president of Anak
ng Bayan (nation’s youth) said, students who can no
longer afford to study in expensive private tertiary
schools and are planning to transfer to public higher
education institutions may just have to give up their
dream of earning a college diploma.

Palatino also predicted an upsurge in the rate of
college dropouts and number of out-of-school youth in
the coming school year, a situation that will worsen
in 2010.

Recently, the United Nations Educational, Scientific
and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) National Commission
of the Philippines reported a measly 22 percent
overall student survival from 1st to 4th year college.
In June 2004, the Wallace report revealed that the
dropout rate in college is at a staggering all-time
high of 73 percent.

A similar study – a primer on the country’s education
system - was made by the National Union of Students of
the Philippines (NUSP) also in June last year.

Palatino said that access to public higher education
institutions, which are the last resort for students
who want to obtain a college degree, has become
impossible to many college hopefuls. While it is true
that SUCs offer a tuition lower than private schools,
educational expenditures in state schools and
universities have seen the biggest increases in recent
years, thus making it also inaccessible to ordinary
students.

Exodus from private school to public

A new report by the Commission on Higher Education
(CHED) shows that the number of tertiary population in
schoolyear 2002-2003 was 2.4 million compared to 1.87
million in 1994-1995. It cites however that while
state institutions had their population soar by
415,972 (from 399,623 to 815,595 during the same
period), private colleges and universities could only
absorb an additional 139,357 enrolees (or from 1.472
million to 1.611 million).

It is true that in 1997, enrollment in private
tertiary schools grew by 6.47 percent. By 2002 however
the figure plunged drastically to a -2.8 percent.
Enrollment figures in private schools fell by 46,354
in schoolyear 2002-2003 from 1,657,735 in the previous
year.

The exodus of college students enrolled in private
schools to state universities and colleges (SUCs) over
the last two decades is also shown in other CHED
records. In 1980, only 10 percent of college students
were studying in SUCs. By 1994, the number went up to
21 percent and in school year 2002-2003, it already
accounted for 34 percent of tertiary population.

Apparently, Palatino said, many college students have
been going in droves to SUCs in recent years because
of the incessant tuition and miscellaneous fee hikes
in private schools as mandated by the Education Act of
1982.

This is aggravated by the low priority that government
places on state education as manifested not only by
constantly chopping down education budgets but also by
reducing the number of public tertiary schools in the
country. From 271 in 1996, the number of public
tertiary institutions was down to only 173 by 2002.

As a result, enrollment figures in public tertiary
schools have also seen a sharp decline since 1997,
from a growth rate of 20.75 percent that year to only
0.9 percent by 2002.

Biggest tuition increase in SUCs

In recent years, the shift from public to private
funding of SUCs has resulted in the jacking up of
tuition and miscellaneous fees in all these
institutions. The biggest increase in tuition took
place in the Philippine Normal University (PNU) last
2003, from P10 to P50 per unit or 400 percent.

Ladderized tuition hikes are also ongoing in SUCs in
Central Luzon and Bicol until 2006. The

Central Luzon State University (CLSU) plans to
increase tuition and other fees by as much as 298
percent. Similarly, the Aklan Polytechnic Institute
will implement a 400 percent tuition increase within
four years, which effectively doubles tuition every
year.

Most of these increases were the result of the
imposition of a tuition scheme similar to the
Socialized Tuition Fee Adjustment Program (STFAP)
implemented in the University of the Philippines (UP)
in 1989. Under the program, the UP tuition shot up by
nearly 300 percent, from P11 to P300 per unit today.
This scheme is also now being implemented in public
technical and vocational schools in the country.

While some SUCs increased their tuition by more than a
hundred fold over the last years, some feigned by
pretending to maintain the same rates. What they did
however was to increase miscellaneous fees as well as
tuition in graduate schools.

At the Polytechnic University of the Philippines
(PUP), for instance, tuition remains at P12 per unit.
But the same university has imposed a 67-100 percent
hike in processing fees this school year. The biggest
increase was for the fine for late enrolment, from P10
to P100. And there are new fees charged: for shifting
form, verification of grades per subject, re-admission
fee and change of subject or schedule.

Other SUCs such as the University of Northern
Philippines in Vigan, Ilocos Sur and Samar State
Polytechnic College in Eastern Visayas collect a P200
development fee.

In UP, laboratory fees in five departments and
colleges have increased from P50 to P600. In its
graduate schools, tuition increased in 2001, from P300
per unit to a maximum of P700, a 66.67 to 400 percent
hike.

Anak ng Bayan Youth Party’s Palatino said that with
educational services now being treated as a mere
“commodity for trade,” educational institutions
previously insulated from market forces due to
relatively stronger state support in the past must
from now on bow to the "harsh discipline of the
market."

“By ‘privatizing’ institutions of higher learning, the
state must now clamp down on the proliferation of
non-viable campuses and course offerings,” he added.
“Apparently, the ideal of ‘non-viability’ is not
connected to any other concept than that of
profitability.”

Paying scholars

Overall, Palatino said, expenditures for public
education including tuition, lodging, food,
transportation and books have soared in recent years.
He cited the findings of the 1998 International
Comparative Higher Education Finance and Accessibility
Project of the University of Buffalo on Philippine
higher education which reveals that a student in a
local university or college (LUC) who lives with his
or her parents needs at least P46,950 every semester.
On the other hand, an iskolar ng bayan (state scholar)
who lives as an “independent adult” will need as much
as P101,650 a semester.

So now, most Filipino families can’t anymore afford to
send their children even to public schools, especially
given the stagnant wage level and declining income, he
said.

Based on the 2003 Family Income and Expenditure Survey
(FIES), the average Filipino family income went down
by 10 percent compared to year 2000 figures. The
inflation-adjusted average family income in 2003 fell
to P130,594 in 2003 from P145,121 in 2000.

Province of the elite

The current crisis in tertiary education, Palatino
said, should also be blamed on government’s policy of
rationalization. The policy allows SUCs to be treated
no longer as national agencies performing
socially-oriented activities and hence entitled to
government subsidy, but as income-earning entities.

“This further translates into incentives for
money-making tertiary schools, thereby fully
encouraging the commercialization of education,”
Palatino said. “The policy has ensured corporate
dominance even in public education, making tertiary
education the province of the elite.”

He said government’s own education policies further
inflate the ballooning uneducated population. “If it
will continue its present thrust on education, the
government will be driving more and more students out
of school every year,” he said. Bulatlat

Profit-makers Produce Mediocre Graduates

If the average tuition rate increase of 12 percent
continues for the next five years, the national
average per unit would reach P590.20 by 2010. By then
tuition would have increased by as high as 1,257.41
percent since 1990.

By Carl Marc Ramota
Contributed to Bulatlat
(Conclusion)

Many college students are dropping out of school, but
there are no similar danger signs as far as some
private universities and colleges are concerned. Their
new corporate owners are raking in profits as they
continue to hike tuition and other fees.

But the question is, do higher college costs mean
quality education? Not necessarily, if recent reports
about the results of board or licensure exams are any
indication.

In the current schoolyear, 381 out of 1,321 private
higher education institutions - or 29 percent of the
total – have applied for tuition increase. The
national average tuition increase is 11.37 percent or
P33.15; the current rate per unit is P334.89.

In the National Capital Region, the average tuition is
pegged at P614.54 posting a 10.83 percent increase
compared to last year’s figures.

A study made by Anak ng Bayan Youth Party on the
rising cost of tertiary education showed that in just
five years, from academic year 2000-2001 to the
present, the national average tuition rate has
increased by as much as 63 percent. The National
Capital Region (NCR) average rate, on the other hand,
went up by 57 percent.

Based on the Commission on Higher Education’s (CHED)
records on tuition increases, tuition was steadily
increasing by an average of almost 12 percent for the
last five years.

Deregulation of tuition

Raymond Palatino, vice president of Anak ng Bayan,
blamed the Education Act of 1982 for the staggering
tuition hikes in the last two decades. “By giving them
a free hand in determining tuition rate, the Education
Act effectively bestowed private school owners
limitless powers,” he said.

Batas Pambansa (national law) No. 232, otherwise known
as the Education Act of 1982, laid down the guidelines
and regulations governing the collection and
application of tuition and other fees by all
educational institutions. In particular, Section 42
gave private schools a free hand in determining
tuition rates thus allowing private schools to
increase the fee every school year.

The deregulated environment set by the Act ensured the
wholesale commodification of a fast-expanding private
tertiary education, Palatino said.

“This was also the reason behind the unexpected
collapse of the College Assurance Plan (CAP),”
Palatino said. “CAP’s downfall merely highlights how
the cost of education, particularly in the tertiary
level, has dramatically increased after the
deregulation of tuition.”

From 1990-1995 just before the Asian financial bubble
burst in 1997, tuition jumped to 275 percent. For the
last 15 years since 1990, tuition has swelled by a
whopping 670 percent.

Anak ng Bayan projects that if the average tuition
rate increase of 12 percent continues for the next
five years, the national average per unit would reach
P590.20 by 2010. By then tuition would have increased
by as high as 1,257.41 percent since 1990.

But these figures only speak of the average tuition
rate per unit in private schools. Most exclusive
schools charge tuition five times higher than the
average.

At present, Jose Rizal University (JRU) in
Mandaluyong, Metro Manila imposes the highest tuition
rate with P2,600 per unit. The runners-up include De
La Salle University (DLSU)-Manila (P1,506/unit); Asia
Pacific College (P1,240/unit); and Mapua Institute of
Technology (P1,254.64/unit).

Based on the average tuition increase every academic
year in these schools, tuition per unit in JRU would
reach P4,582.09 in five years; DLSU-Manila with
P2,654.10; Asia Pacific College with P2,185.31; and
MIT with P2,211.10. In 2010, a student with a full
21-unit load have to pay P96,223.89, P55,736.10,
P45,891.51 and P46,433.10, respectively.

“Clearly, the relentless hikes in tuition and other
fees have earned for private school owners millions of
profits over the last two decades,” Palatino says.
“This largely explains why some business tycoons like
Lucio Tan and the Yuchengcos are now venturing into
tertiary education.”

Most of these schools have consistently landed among
the country’s top 1,000 corporations since 1996. By
the end of 2003, nine schools were included in this
list. Their combined profits amounted to P1.13
billion.

Private schools frequently listed among the top
corporations in the country in terms of profit are the
Centro Escolar University (CEU), MIT, Far Eastern
University (FEU), UE, Philippine Maritime Institute
(PMI), Technological Institute of the Philippines
(TIP), AMA Computer University and STI College.

Substandard education

So, does expensive education mean quality education?
This is not so in the country: While the cost of
tertiary education has increased, the results of the
licensure examinations showed a continuous decline in
the quality of higher education in the last few years.


In 1995, the Task Force on Higher Education even said,
“College education in the Philippines is comparable to
top science high schools in the country and regular
secondary education in Europe and Japan.” This comment
is reflected by the pathetic results of annual
licensure examinations.

In the list of most popular programs, according to
CHED, are Teacher Education, Accountancy, Criminology,
Marine Transportation and Electronic and
Communications Engineering (ECE). However, records of
the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) show that
only a fraction among the thousands who flock to these
courses are able to attain their dream professional
career.

The national passing average for these courses and for
most programs offered in the Philippines has not even
reached 50 percent. From 1997 to 2001, the passing
rate for Accountancy was only 18.40 percent;
Criminology was better with 47.60 percent; and ECE was
the highest so far with 48.20 percent.

In the 2003 licensure exams, Accountancy remained the
lowest at 19 percent. Teacher Education, both in basic
and secondary level, had only a 26 percent passing
rate.

So mediocre were the results that in the same year,
CHED ordered the phasing out of 115 higher private
institutions that had a five percent or lower passing
rate in the licensure exams. Of these, only 17 schools
have followed the order.

Some schools are offering programs without government
permit. The most notorious of these, according to
CHED, is the ABE international School of Business and
Economics. ABE is currently offering degrees in Hotel
and Restaurant Management, Business Administration,
Tourism and Accountacy in its Caloocan, Taft and
Makati branches with no standard permit from CHED.

Dim future

Palatino urged lawmakers to repeal the Education Act
of 1982. “Our lawmakers must immediately act to stop
these tuition and miscellaneous fee increases and put
a moratorium on the proposed new round of hikes for
the next school year. Unless the government starts to
flex its muscles on these increases, we will be seeing
a higher drop-out rate and bigger number of
out-of-school youth in the next five years.”

Even CHED admits that “unless BP 232 (Education Act of
1982) is repealed or amended, the most viable course
for all concerned is to take a close look at where the
increases are going.”

“Unless the government reverses its present education
policies and its thrust to hand over tertiary
education to private sector and until it flexes its
muscles to stop the incessant hikes in tuition and
other fees, it will certainly bury the confidence,
hopes and great faith of the Filipino youth and the
nation for a brighter future ahead,” Palatino warned.

 
At Thursday, May 12, 2005 7:00:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Michelle, we have nothing to hide and would want you and your fellow students to familiarize yourselves with the facts and issues of the PPI spin-off/Yudchengco divestment/rehab, etc. So, be there at the general assembly at 8 am, 14 May at St Paul's College.

 

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