Civil Law Dean Nilo Divina (File photo)

DEAN Nilo Divina of the Faculty of Civil Law has denied giving his son special treatment, addressing anonymous claims that surfaced online this week.

The accusations came from a now-deleted Reddit post in the popular LawStudentsPH subreddit that amassed 322 upvotes after claiming that Gabriel Divina, the dean’s son, was able to pass his courses and graduate despite inadequate academic performance and absenteeism.

In an email to the Varsitarian, Divina said his son was not given preferential treatment in Civil Law.

“My son was subjected to the same academic standards as everyone else in the UST Faculty of Civil Law. I did not talk to any of his professors nor interceded in his behalf. He, in fact, failed one major subject and passed only on retake,” Divina said.

The anonymous Reddit user claimed that during Mercantile Law Review 1 and 2, which Divina purportedly taught, Gabriel was “always late, often times absent.”

However, Divina said he taught Gabriel only in Mercantile Law Review 1 and did not have him as a student in Mercantile Law Review 2.

“He was late in about three occasions and was absent once (because of illness). Had he exceeded the maximum number of allowable absences, he would have been given a failing mark,” Divina said.

The post also claimed Gabriel leveraged his godfather relationship with a Civil Law faculty member to avoid recitation. “Sorry, ninong, I haven’t read the case,” Gabriel was quoted as supposedly saying during an online class.

Gabriel denied in a post on X (formerly Twitter) that this incident happened, adding that he did not know at the time that the faculty member in question is his baptismal godfather.

Gabriel entered the Faculty of Civil Law in 2018 and completed his Juris Doctor degree in June.

“[A]ll fourth-year students are subjected to intense deliberation by the faculty council and the professors handling review subjects to determine who are eligible for graduation. When it was his turn, I stepped out of the room to ensure uninhibited discussion,” Dean Divina said.

“The accusation of nepotism is baseless and unjust not only to the faculty and the Office of the Dean but my son as well. How I wish that the persons making the unkind accusation did not hide behind the cloak of anonymity so I can meet them, determine the context of the complaint, clarify their issues and hopefully, be enlightened,” he added. with reports from Eduelle Jan T. Macababbad


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