Gov’t scholars in Philippines facing hell, education ministry ‘not aware’
BY MAVIS NISHIMURA PODOKOLO
SOLOMON Islands students in the Philippines are in danger of living there illegally if the Government does not do anything soon.
And, permanent secretary of the education ministry (MEHRD) Dr Franco Rodie, says the government is not aware of the students’ situation.
Government is reportedly delaying their allowances. The last was paid in July.
The students are facing a plethora of troubles; many of them are with expired visas, most have outstanding rents and bills to pay, plus school matters are yet to be settled.
Speaking to Island Sun, a student, who requests anonymity since our education ministry does not take lightly with students talking out in the media, says the anxiety levels of students is at an all-time high.
The student says starvation is now even a possibility for some of the students. Being kicked out of their rented homes is a likelihood which could happen any day soon. And, with visas being expired, it is only a matter of time before the Philippines immigration catches up with the students.
This is not the first time for government to delay allowances for students in the Philippines, but this time round the situation is dire for them.
“Currently students live with expired visa for almost a month now and because of that students will be paying the fine for illegals stay,” the student says.
“Since the delay of allowances, every student has been experiencing accumulation of basic needs such as rental, water, food and power bills.
“At the moment student are suffered academically and socially which contribute to the negative impact of our studies.
“Some of us come from poor families. We depend only on the allowances which we see as individual means that will support us in our schooling.
“As a collective voice from students, we’re strongly urging the Solomon Islands Government through National Training Unit to consider our request by paying our allowance as soon as possible.”
Permanent Secretary for Ministry of Education and Human Resources Development (MEHRD) Franco Rodie told Island Sun on Monday that the ministry is not aware of these matters but will work to sort out these concerns.