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Universities, colleges urged to tighten security

COMMISSION on Higher Education Chairperson Prospero De Vera yesterday urged universities and colleges nationwide to review and strengthen their security measures in the wake of Sunday’s bombing at the Mindanao State University-Marawi City campus that left four dead and 50 injured.

De Vera, who condemned the deadly blast in a statement he issued late Sunday night, said higher education institutions (HEIs) need to upgrade their security measures to ensure the safety of their students, faculty and non-teaching staff.

“As the Chairman of the Mindanao State University Board of Regents, I will ensure that the university policies will be reviewed to make sure safety and security measures are added so that this horrific event will not be repeated,” De Vera said.

“As CHED Chairman, I urge the board of other HEIs to do the same. Violence has no place in a civilized society, particularly in an institution of higher learning,” he added.

He also called on law enforcement authorities to “ensure security and protection” for all to prevent a repeat of the MSU incident.

De Vera also promised the CHED’s assistance to the victims of the MSU blast, including the provision of psychosocial counseling.

“We will work with the MSU President and officials in providing necessary counseling and support to the affected individuals, particularly the staff and students of the university,” De Vera said.

Marawi City was the scene of more than five months of fighting in 2017 between government troops and members of the ISIS-linked Maute terrorist group who attacked the city to try to establish an Islamic caliphate.

President Marcos Jr. has vowed to bring to justice the perpetrators of the deadly bombing that he described as “foreign terrorists.”

He also instructed the Philippine National Police and the Armed Forces of the Philippines to ensure the safety and protection of civilians and vulnerable communities.


Two companies of soldiers and policemen were deployed at the Mindanao State University (MSU) to beef up security.

Lt. Gen. William Gonzales, commander of the AFP Western Mindanao Command, said one company of soldiers (about 120 men) was sent to the school so the people