FOR REMOVING an exhibit of the UST Journalism Society so that it could mount its own, the Student Organization Coordinating Council (SOCC) is facing accusations of manhandling an organization it is supposed to represent.

The Society, which is the organization of all A.B. Journalism students of the Faculty of Arts and Letters, has complained to the Office of Student Affairs and Community Service (Osacs) about the “vandalism.” But the Student Welfare and Development Board (SWDB) said the SOCC did not dismantle the exhibit out of malice and merely served warning to the SOCC.

SOCC president Harry Uy earlier apologized to Society president Criselda Uy (no realtion) and promised that the SOCC would make a public apology and pay indemnity. But as of press time, the Society president said the SOCC has yet to honor its promise.

The controversey stemmed from the holding at the UST Main Bldg. Lobby of the Society’s exhibit titled “Old Glory, New Media: UST Journalism in the Age of Information Technology,” which featured published works of some of the group’s members, pictures of alumni and their accomplishments, and a selection of students’ works in their class in Photojournalism.

The Society reserved the use of the lobby from Aug. 31 to Sept. 1 with the Office of the Treasurer. It later asked for an extension up to Sept. 3, which was granted.

However, on Sept. 3, Journalism students were “shocked” to see their entire exhibit gone and with the SOCC commemorative card exhibit in its place. They found materials of their exhibit in several trashcans in the building. Most of the photos, still to be graded by the students’ instructor in Photojournalism, were either destroyed or gone.

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When the Society officers made inquiries, the SOCC staffers reportedly treated them rudely. It turned out that the SOCC had no permission from the Office of the Treasurer to use the lobby.

In an interview with the Varsitarian, Uy of the SOCC said the incident was due to “miscommunication.” He said he had tried to text Ms. Uy before the SOCC put up its exhibit, but to no avail.

He said the SOCC then checked with the Osacs about the Society’s exhibit and found out it was supposed to end on Sept. 1. Ms. Uy admitted that she failed to notify the Osacs about their exhibit’s extension, but she explained the lobby’s reservation was under the Office of the Treasurer, not the Osacs.

Mr. Uy denied the SOCC destroyed the exhibit materials and blamed instead the maintenance personnel.

The incident was discussed in a meeting by the two groups with Dr. Evelyn Songco, the assistant to the rector for student affairs and community service, and Prof. Zenaida Famorca, SWDB head and SOCC adviser, last Sept. 10.

After the meeting, it was agreed that the SOCC would issue a public apology and pay in full the damages.

But Ms. Uy said that the SOCC president had threatened recently to retract his decision as he accused the Society of “sensationalizing” the issue. He was apparently referring to the expression of support of the AB Student Council to the Society’s grievances.

But Ms. Uy said she had no control over the ABSC and urged the SOCC to fulfill its promise. Maria Pacita C. Joson

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