Tuesday, March 28, 2006


“As our new graduates receive their diplomas from their respective universities, there will be not enough jobs in the workforce to absorb them.” This was the statement of Marco delos Reyes, National President of the National Union of Students of the Philippines as the NUSP and the Kabataan Party lambasted the failure of the Arroyo government to generate enough enough for the youth, despite its promise to provide six to ten million jobs in six years.

Delos Reyes says, “Even as Mrs. Arroyo proclaims that at the core of job generation would be call centers, construction and tourism, it does not represent a fundamental solution to the problem of widespread joblessness in the country. These are unsustainable in the long run, as these are dependent on fluctuations of the international market.”

“The extent of joblessness in the country is highlighted by the fact that graduates are forced to become OFWS abroad, employed in jobs entirely different from the degrees they obtained – teachers becoming household help and engineers becoming company drivers in the Middle East, to name a few. Most appalling, though, is the nerve of Mrs. Arroyo to continue this policy of labor export, honoring the OFWs as heroes in order to hide her failure to provide secure and gainful employment at home.” Delos Reyes asserts.

“The youth never studied, paid high tuition and fees, and obtained degrees only to be unemployed or underemployed in the end. But even if there were a number of jobs available, it is uncertain whether these jobs can provide permanent employment to the new graduates, especially call centers where high turnover rates abound. More so, the current practice of contractualization of labor by many private corporations has deprived many workers and employees their deserved salaries, benefits and securities of tenure. Government service is also untenable due to its current policy of freeze hiring and rationalization, besides the fact that government perennially keeps its employees overworked and underpaid. The best example for this would public school teachers that receive less than ten thousand pesos in salaries, a far cry from the estimated 16,000 pesos or above needed by families to meet the their daily cost of living.” Delos Reyes explains.

Delos Reyes asserts, “As such, we demand the Arroyo government to provide gainful employment and job security to the youth, especially the new graduates. As the future of this nation, the youth must be sufficiently be given due importance by this government. It should instead focus on job generation than quelling political dissent and harassing those questioning its legitimacy.”

“But the sincerity of Mrs. Arroyo to provide jobs for our new graduates is greatly being doubted by the NUSP as she has consistently failed the youth in addressing youth issues such as high tuition fees in private universities and budget cuts and state universities. What assurance do we have now, especially when suspected military agents gunned down Cris Hugo, a graduating Bicol University student who is one of the brightest lights of student leadership, for simply standing up against the Arroyo regime for her failures in ensuring the youth a bright future ahead.” delos Reyes finally says.

Reference: 09173375051, Terry Ridon, NUSP Vice-President for Luzon

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