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Bacolod City, PhilippinesWednesday, July 15, 2009
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We’ll honor 125
scholarships -- TESDA

BY CARLA GOMEZ

Technical Education and Skills Development Authority regional director, Buen Mondejar, yesterday reiterated that TESDA will honor the scholarships of 125 scholars of the 500 recommended by Presidential Deputy Spokesman Anthony Golez.

“Regarding the growing controversy between Cong. Monico Puentevella and Presidential Spokesperson Anthony Golez, there are 125 Pangulong Gloria scholars (PGS) enrolled in various training programs in Bacolod City that are being contested. Because there is a greater interest here, other than a political contest, naturally TESDA will honor the enrollment and pay completely for training costs of the scholars along with their daily P60 training support allowance,” he said in a press release emailed to the DAILY STAR.

“Their political affiliations are not of concern to TESDA. They have already been accepted into the system,” he said.

Golez had earlier said that TESDA Secretary Augusto Syjuco told him the scholarships of 500 TESDA scholars he recommended had been stopped on the request of Puentevella.

Puentevlla has, however, denied that he made such request.

Mondejar added in his press release that “On those who are seeking scholarships, these will have to be sourced from funds that are set aside for the purpose, such as, from the Priority Development Assistance Fund of Congresspersons and from the Local Government Units who are willing to share funding on a one-to-one counterparting arrangement through the I-CARE Program of TESDA”.

Meanwhile, the number of scholarships earlier stated to be raffled off at the Sarah Geronimo concert at the St. La Salle Coliseum in Bacolod City Friday, yesterday had been erased from posters of the event.

On Monday, April Rose Pelaez, 19, of Barangay Mansilingan, Bacolod, one of the 375 scholars recommended by Golez who scholarships have been put on hold by the TESDA pending audit of availability of resources, questioned the raffle.

She asked why TESDA would put the scholarships it  promised to her and her companions on hold for alleged evaluation of availability of funds, yet it can raffle off 1,000 scholarships.

At the bottom of the Geronimo concert posters earlier posted in Bacolod it was stated: “1,000 Pangulong Gloria Scholarships will be given on the spot to lucky ticket holder…Buy your tickets now.”

Yesterday the “1,000” on the posters in Bacolod had been covered with black ink.

Mondejar, on Monday, said perhaps the printing of the 1,000 scholarships up to be raffled was mistake as a new scheme was being adopted in the light of their current evaluation of available slots.

Ma. Susan dela Rama, TESDA executive director of its public information office, said before, they used to give as many as 1,000 scholarships out at Geronimo concerts in other areas, but because of the current situation they will have to reduce the number depending on how many scholarships are still available.

She said only about 100 scholarships instead will be raffled out at the Geronimo concert.*CPG

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