MANILA, Philippines – Telecommunications magnate Manny V. Pangilinan has pledged P5 million to the University of the Philippines following his split with Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU).
Pangilinan announced his pledge during the 50th anniversary of UP’s Alpha Sigma fraternity, which made him an honorary member, according to a report by TV5's news website InterAksyon.com.
“Let this gift be an expression of my commitment to the future of UP,” he said.
The businessman praised the state university giving “a greater return on the nation’s investment for its children.”
Pangilinan recently ended his long-term relationship with his alma mater Ateneo after clashing with the university over various issues, including mining and the reproductive health bill.
But the businessman said his companies, namely the Philippine Long Distance Telephone (PLDT) Co., Meralco, and Philex Mining, have been dealing with the state university even before he made his pledge.
“There's a quality about a UP education which has encouraged our businesses to engage Peyups across many touchpoints,” he said.
Pangilinan, who is known as one of the country’s biggest sports patrons, also expressed his admiration for the fighting spirit of the UP Maroons.
He said that what impresses him about the Maroons and the UP community is their cheerful attitude despite their losses in UAAP.
“Outside the basketball court, I like the never say die attitude of the community: Natatalo na, ang yayabang pa… Hindi na nga sumampa sa finals, lamang pa sila sa alaskahan. Ano bang meron sa fishball sa Diliman na ang saya-saya niyo matapos kayo ma-eliminate?”
“The last time the Maroons won the UAAP championship was when Alpha Sigma was just about to turn 25 years. Now that you’re on your 50th, I’d like to take this occasion to make a humble contribution to UP,” Pangilinan said.