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Dumaguete City, Philippines Wednesday, August 31, 2016
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Silliman U officials on fight
vs. drugs: Life a sacred gift

The Board of Trustees of Silliman University in Dumaguete City has issued a statement calling for justice in the light of recent events to crush the illegal drugs trade and criminality in the Philippines.

“In the past few months, our country has been torn in factions centered around the idea of justice that seems to be testing the limits and ideals of our democracy”, the statement, signed by Silliman president Ben Malayang III, showed.

A Call for Justice (A Statement of the Board of Trustees of Silliman University) was released this past weekend at the height of the university's 115th Founders' Day anniversary, which culminated Sunday.

While the statement did not mention the Philippine government or the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte, it was clearly directed as a reaction to the spate of killings and violence as a result of the government's heightened campaign against drug lords, pushers and other criminal elements.

“We have seen sweeping and often revolutionary changes in the running of the country, and particularly so in the pursuit of criminal elements that, while laudable in its earnestness, has also stirred up anger and doubt over its intensity and integrity”, the statement said.

It further reads: the Silliman community knows the importance of speaking up and fighting for the democratic ideal, especially in trying times”.

It added that because Silliman is a Christian community, “professing a God who has showed us a much better way, and who has showed us the kind of life that leads to a truly transformed humanity, we need to make a stand with regard to the value of life that should be the foundation of our very being”.

“Life is to be considered a precious and sacred gift from our creator God.” It added, “To enhance this gift of life, we seek a justice system that obeys due process, considers deeply the humane, and believes in the power of the restorative. For a Christian community, there can be no other option to take”.*JFP


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