“Yes to Life! No to Death Penalty!”
Despite the intense heat of the sun — students, administrators, faculty, and staff of Ateneo de Naga University (AdNU) gathered together at the Four Pillars to raise their voices in response to the re-imposition of Death Penalty Bill last 8 March 2017 at 11:30 AM.
House Bill Number 4727, most commonly known as Death Penalty Bill, was approved at the House of Representatives yesterday, 7 March 2017, for the third and final reading, garnering 216 votes for yes, 54 votes no, and 1who chose to abstain. The scope of the bill was constrained to drug-related heinous crimes only and the original proposed list of offenses such as plunder, treason and rape were dropped.
The ADNU community responded to the nationwide call to come out and shout against the approval of Death Penalty Bill on its final reading. The event was in solidarity with other Ateneo schools and institutions who expressed their strong opposition against the bill. Despite the non-cancelation of classes, faculty, and students decided to walk out of their classes to participate in the noise barrage.
Naga Parochial School, Universidad de Sta. Isabel and Holy Rosary Minor Seminary also participated in the rally. They lined up along Ateneo Avenue, P. Santos, Elias Angeles, and Jacob street while making noise using cans, whistles, hornpipes, and other materials. They also brought with them placards to decry and express their disappointment on the said bill.
According to AdNU’s University President Fr. Primitivo E. Viray, Jr., S.J., the noise barrage will not stop here. The University will continue to participate and make noise until the senate hears the nation’s voice.
Though the university president was saddened by the news, he said that there is still hope. He also thanked those who voted against the bill as well as everyone who supported today’s activity.
After the noise barrage, everyone who attended returned to their respective classrooms and offices. Elmer T. Sto. Domingo, Jr., CCD Director, gave a short speech of gratitude. The event ended at exactly 12:30 in the afternoon.
by Alma Jane Babilonia