Under the theme, “Defend Student Rights, Uphold Human Rights,” STAND-UP (Student Alliance for the Advancement of Democratic Rights – UP) marked its 12th anniversary more than two weeks ago coinciding with the commemoration of International Human Rights Week, an Anti-Charter Change campaign and a campaign to Defend Student Rights and the Office of the Student Regent.
On Saturday, December 6, together with its member and observer organizations and student formations under the League of Youth For the Environment (LYFE), the alliance held a road-painting activity along the street between the Faculty Center and Palma Hall. Aside from the orgs’ logos, the most prominent mark on the asphalt canvass is the large “Defend Student Rights, Student Regent” call, which highlights the important campus campaign to defend the Student Regent institution.
On Monday, December 8, the alliance held a congress at the College of Education Theater, attended by member and guest organizations, and guest speakers Teodoro Casino of Bayan Muna and Vencer Crisostomo of League of Filipino Students. It was a whole day of talks, discussions and resolution building, all towards advancing the campaign for students’ rights and the broad campaign against Charter change. The next day, December 9, the alliance participated in the launching of Cine Veritas Human Rights Festival, together with the UP Film Institute, the University Student Council and other participating institutions and organizations. The week-long festival was opened by a human rights march around the Academic Oval and an exhibit opening at the Ishmael Bernal Gallery at the UP Cine Adarna. The four-day festival aimed to promote human rights awareness through various multi-media and multi-format activities organized by the participating groups.
A cultural night was held the next night, December 10, on the grounds in front of the Faculty Center, with the Pi Omicron tambayan as a platform. There were cultural performances and solidarity messages from member organizations, fraternities and sororities. Over coffee and some pansit, STAND-UP members enjoyed each other’s company that night and vowed to uphold the militant character and the democratic principles of the alliance onwards to the university’s next century.
To cap off the anniversary week, STAND-UP took part in the broad mobilization against Charter change held in the Makati business district last December 12, linking arms with the people in condemning fresh attempts by the Arroyo administration to amend the Constitution. Right after the rally, the alliance supported and helped organize a twelve-hour concert together with the Office of the Student Regent (OSR) and KASAMA sa UP (Katipunan ng mga Sangguniang Mag-aaral sa UP) dubbed Defend the OSR Concert, to raise awareness and encourage broad participation in the campaign to preserve and protect the institution of students’ sole representation in the highest policy-making body in the university.