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Problems pile up for MCC-Tipolo

CEBU, Philippines - The woes of the Mandaue City College under Paulus Cañete are piling and its graduates will not be spared.

The school is facing another closure for failure to pay business taxes and its education graduates will not be allowed by the Professional Regulations Commission (PRC) to take the licensure exams next month.

Despite all these, Cañete remains adamant about their existence and is ready to go to the Supreme Court if he has to.

In a press conference yesterday, representatives from the PRC and the City Treasurer’s Office of Mandaue City cited the various violations of the school, which is under Cañete.

Another school with a similar name and recognized by the city is being run by Dr. Susana Cabahug.

Lawyer Mildred Antipuesto, the legal officer of PRC-7, said that not only will MCC’s graduates not be allowed to take the licensure examination next month, the licenses of those who passed the Licensure Examination for Teachers in the past will not be renewed as it will be subject for clarification with their PRC head office in Manila.

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From 2007 to this year, MCC graduates were able to take the LET and all those who took the exams passed.

City Treasurer Regal Oliva said that he will also order the closure of MCC-Tipolo campus after it failed to secure a business permit from the city and pay its taxes due.

“We can close their school on the basis that they have not secured any business permit,” Oliva said.

The treasurer added that since this school under Cañete is not recognized by the city when Mayor Jonas Cortes assumed office in 2007 such is now considered as a private entity and thus has been illegally operating for their failure to get accreditation from CHED.

Oliva said that since his office has not received any documents that their school has been operating as a non-stock, non-profit institution, then they are obliged to pay their taxes due to the city government and its annual regulatory fees.

The city treasurer even said that they will even go as far collecting the occupational/professional tax from Cañete and his school personnel as the city is now collecting professional taxes of P82.50 each from all employees working in the city.

But before Oliva recommends the closure, a letter will be sent to MCC-Tipolo first.

“I’m giving them five days to comply with the necessary business permits otherwise, I shall recommend for their immediate closure,” said Oliva.

If the city government will order the school closed, it will be the second time that MCC-Tipolo will be meted such order.

CHED also ordered it closed last December 2010 for illegally operating its education program, which Cañete ignored.

Antipuesto said that for their part, PRC is only complying with the order from their head office which states that beginning January 11, 2022 all applicants that will take the licensure examinations are required to submit proof that the state university or college of local university or college where they have graduated has “authority from CHED to operate board programs.”

In fact another letter was sent to them by their PRC head office last July 25 informing all chairpersons and members of various professional regulatory boards that CHED has released a “notice to the public” on the non-admission of graduates of board programs of MCC to any licensure examination.

Antipuesto said that since there weremore than 20 students coming from MCC who failed to submit proof that their school has an “authority to operate board programs,” a letter has been sent to each of them last July 26, informing them that if they could not comply within 15 days of such requirement, they will be barred from taking the LET come September.

Upon knowing that the students will be barred from taking the board this coming September, MCC in a letter to PRC dated July 27 reminded the agency that the recognition of all higher education programs of the “public college” is not by any act of CHED, but directly by law as their school was created through a city ordinance as the school also believed that an accreditation is strictly by law voluntary in nature.

MCC’s letter also stated that CHED also will not issue in their favor the authority to operate as they have recognized the other MCC headed by Dr. Susana Cabahug, which was created by Mayor Jonas Cortes, which they alleged is a violation of the law.

Antipuesto explained that the reason why CHED has recognized the existence of the MCC headed by Cabahug was because it was able to comply with all the requirements set by body for them to operate a higher education program.

Antipuesto said that they do not question the presidency of Canete, but what the agency is questioning is the school’s non-compliance of the CHED requirements and it’s the reason why both schools were separately informed by CHED in 2009 to comply with the requirements after it was found out during an investigation that both failed to comply with the requirements set by the commission.

But Cañete said that in 2008 their school was already able to comply with 90 percent of the CHED’s requirements and when it was about time for them to fully comply with the requirements, CHED never came back to inspect them and it is the reason why they failed to secure an “authority to operate board programs.”

He said that if they failed to secure an authority to operate, it is no longer MCC’s negligence but of CHED. If his graduates will not be allowed to take the board exams next month, he vowed to take legal action against PRC.

He also asked Oliva if there is an existing law which states that his school has been operating illegally as he even challenged him to file a tax evasion case against them. — /NLQ

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