Ban on frats unconstitutional, says Angara

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 03 2014 02:45 PM | Updated as of Jul 03 2014 10:45 PM

MANILA – Senator Juan Edgardo ''Sonny'' Angara on Thursday said the total banning of fraternities in the country would be unconstitutional.

''I don't think you can do that. That would be unconstitutional, because the freedom of association is guaranteed [under the Constitution],'' Angara told ANC Headstart.

''The schools can do what they want, but the state as a whole can't outlaw fraternities."

Angara added banning fraternities would only drive groups to go underground.

Angara, who belongs to the University of the Philippines' Sigma Rho fraternity, issued this comment following the hazing death of Tau Gamma Phi neophyte Guillo Servando.

Servando, an 18-year-old hotel and restaurant management student of De La Salle – College of St. Benilde, died as a result of a hazing activity in Makati last weekend.

No less than President Benigno Aquino III and Vice President Jejomar Binay also said they are not in favor of banning fraternities.

Aquino said the problem lies in violent initiation rites. He stressed there is already an existing law to address this.

On the other hand, Binay, a member of the Alpha Phi Omega fraternity, said it is the right of students to form organizations such as fraternities.

Angara said instead of banning fraternities, there must be a tougher regulation of such organizations.

''Under the Anti-Hazing Law, the schools have a role and it is to be aware of what's going on. And for each fraternity to be recognized, it has to have a faculty adviser,'' he said.

''Under the Family Code, for example kapag naaksidente ang anak mo may subsidiary liabilities iyan. That principle should also apply for fraternities."

CSB, meanwhile, said the formation of fraternities is not welcome in the institution.

It advised students to just say no to fraternities trying to recruit them.