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Harry Potter-inspired Paskuhan draws 110,000 crowd

An estimated crowd of 110,000 attended the annual Paskuhan Fair concert and pyromusical show of the University which took inspiration from the book series and movie franchise Harry Potter Friday, Dec. 20.

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Photo by Jacqueline Martinez/TomasinoWeb

An estimated crowd of 110,000 attended the annual Paskuhan Fair concert and pyromusical show of the University which took inspiration from the book series and movie franchise Harry Potter Friday, Dec. 20.

The crowd estimate is higher of around 10,000 from last year’s festivities according to the UST Security Office.

The official theme of this year’s Paskuhan is “For unto us a child is born” which is taken from the book of the Prophet Isaiah.

Unfazed by the light rainfall at the start of the event, this year’s highly-anticipated program at the UST Grandstand featured some of the local bands and artists such as Himig Borhuh, Magnus Haven, Hey Billie!, Munimuni, Lola Amour, and Ben&Ben. 

However, The Juans was not able to perform due to “a non-compliance issue between the bookers and organizers of the event after hours of trying [their] best to meet halfway,” in a statement they released on Facebook.

The Salinggawi Dance Troupe of the University also graced the stage with their performance, as well as the UST Galvanize of the senior high school along with Ronins.  

Following “one Thomasian is to one non-Thomasian visitor” and “no water bottle” policies, heightened and stricter security measures were followed. 

Keeping Paskuhan #ZeroWaste

Stations for garbage segregation were also implemented to ensure that the event follows the University guidelines in maintaining the event clean and orderly.

UST Green Marshals stationed at the eight designated trash collecting bins led the campaign in keeping a zero waste Paskuhan Fair. 

Last Dec. 2, Paskuhan started with the opening of lights and the Thomasian Agape led by the University officials and Manila City Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso. 

The Christmas tree and decors will remain lit every night until the first week of January, 2020.

The tradition of the annual celebration during the Christmas season in the University emerged in 1991, and was formally named Paskuhan a couple of years later. 

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‘Duterte regime falls deaf to people’s cries’ –CSC, LSCs

Central Student Council (CSC), along with the Local Student Councils (LSC), denounced President Duterte’s lack of COVID-19 response roadmap in his fifth and penultimate State of the Nation Address yesterday, July 27. 

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Carmina Beatriz Dizon/TomasinoWeb

Central Student Council (CSC), along with the Local Student Councils (LSC), denounced President Duterte’s lack of COVID-19 response roadmap in his fifth and penultimate State of the Nation Address yesterday, July 27. 

“As we reflect upon the state of our nation, so stands our responsibility to address incompetence, the lack of national response from the administration in implementing the need for mass testing and systematic protocols in containing the virus, and its blatant value for militarization over medical solutions,” CSC’s said in a unity statement released yesterday. 

The councils demanded accountability from public officials such as Senator Kiko Pimentel, NCRPO chief Debold Sinas, and Malacañang spokesperson Harry Roque. 

They also called on lawmakers who created “rushed laws that impede fundamental humans rights and freedom of speech.”

‘This is not how democracy works’ 

As Thomasians, the council expressed that they “could no longer sit idly” and watch the government compromise and abuse the country’s freedom. 

“As President Duterte falls deaf towards the cries of his people, his self-serving and personal interests prevail,” CSC said. 

According to them, this is not how democracy works. 

“[I]t is our utmost responsibility that we use our voice to speak for the silenced and oppressed,” the council said. 

“[W]e will embody the resistance and furbish our strength until it extends to the majority of our fellow Filipinos, the true cradle of our sovereignty,” the council added. Paolo Alejandrino 

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Youth groups, student leaders file 14th plea vs anti-terror law

The University’s Central Student Council (CSC), along with different youth groups and student leaders, filed a petition that questions the unconstitutionality of the Anti-Terror Law (ATL) before the Supreme Court yesterday, July 23. 

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Carmina Beatriz Dizon/TomasinoWeb

The University’s Central Student Council (CSC), along with different youth groups and student leaders, filed a petition that questions the unconstitutionality of the Anti-Terror Law (ATL) before the Supreme Court yesterday, July 23. 

“Members of these organizations continue to experience red-tagging, harassment, and intimidation from security forces for actively engaging in protests and different forms of advocacy work and for speaking out on the current administration’s policies,” their statement read.

The petition was filed by Atty. Dino de Leon on behalf of 16 youth organizations “to protect their members and their fellow youth from the dangerous provisions of the Act.” 

CSC, which was represented by Arts and Letters student Therese Ifurung, was joined by De La Salle University Student Government, Sanggunian ng mga Mag-aaral ng Paaralang Loyola ng Ateneo de Manila, University of the Philippines – Diliman University Student Council, National Union of Students of the Philippines, Student Council Alliance of the Philippines.

Other youth-led and youth-serving organization co-petitioners were Kabataang Tagapagtanggol ng Karapatan, Youth for Human Rights and Democracy, Youth Act Now Against Tyranny, Millennials PH, Samahan ng Progresibong Kabataan, Good Gov PH, Youth Strike 4 Climate Change Philippines, Liberal Youth of the Philippines, Aksyon Kabataan, La Salle Debate Society.

Earlier petitions were filed by a coalition of university law professors, human rights groups, labor unions, partylist blocs, constitutional framers Christian Monsod and Felicitas Arroyo, and retired justices Antonio Carpio and Conchita Carpio-Morales. 

Another petition is expected to be filed yesterday from the Bangsamoro sector, which is set to bring the total number of petitions to 15.

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Take part in SONA protest, student council presidents urge

University of Santo Tomas student leaders, along with different national organizations, urged the youth to participate in the nationwide protest for the incoming fifth State of the Nation Address of President Duterte on July 27.

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Screengrab from SONAgKAISAng Kabataan sa Paglaban press conference

University of Santo Tomas student leaders, along with different national organizations, urged the youth to participate in the nationwide protest for the incoming fifth State of the Nation Address of President Duterte on July 27. 

“It is imperative that we take a stand on the different social issues that our country is currently facing,” Artlets Student Council acting president Paolo Jericho Manuel said during a webinar today, June 20.

Manuel said that democracy, development, and justice are compromised right now due to the government’s incompetence and misplaced priorities, citing the 11,000 ABS-CBN workers who lost their jobs and the signing of the “vague” Anti-Terrorism Act into law. 

Manuel stressed that there is an urgent need for government action in addressing the problem with the accessibility of education.

Department of Education records showed that six million students from last year failed to enroll for the incoming academic year 2020-2021. 

‘Evil move’ 

Central Student Council president Robert Dominic Gonzales called on the youth to stay vigilant in this time of injustices. 

Gonzales said that the passing of the Anti-Terrorism Law is an “evil move” by the government to silence its critics. 

“We will still be haunted by the horrors that this administration has caused,” he said. 

Gonzales also lauded the sacrifice of the frontliners during the COVID-19 pandemic and encouraged the public to protect and support them. 

The webinar, “SONAgKAISAng Kabataan sa Paglaban,” was organized by the Youth Act Now Against Tyranny (YANAT). Raheema Velasco 

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