Jose Abueva, UP president who signed '89 accord with DND, dies

Christian Deiparine - Philstar.com
Jose Abueva, UP president who signed '89 accord with DND, dies
This 2012 photo shows Dr. Jose Abueva, the former University of the Philippines president who died on Aug. 18, 2021 at the age of 93.
Facebook / Centrist Democratic Party of the Philippines

MANILA, Philippines — Dr. Jose Abueva, a renowned political scientist and former University of the Philippines president who was signatory to the now abrogated UP-DND Accord of 1989, died on Wednesday. He was 93.

His daughter Rossana broke the news on Facebook, where she said the former died peacefully in his home in Beverly Hills in Antipolo, Rizal. 

Abueva's sterling career included several positions in the academe and in government. He was UP president in 1987 to 1993, and was briefly UP Diliman's chancellor from 1990 to 1991.

In 1989, he signed with then President Fidel Ramos the accord between UP and the Department of National Defense. 

It barred entry to state forces on any UP campus without prior notifying officials, and sought to guarantee UP's autonomy from military intervention. 

That agreement would later on be terminated by the DND under the Duterte administration, citing unproven claims that UP is recruiting students to the armed movement. 

Abueva at the time said he was "appalled and dismayed" over the DND's decision. "This understanding was rooted in mutual trust, and mutual respect," he said.

"He led an illustrious academic career," said the UP National College of Public Administration and Good Governance, where Abueva was professor emeritus. "Outside the academe, [he] was a celebrated statesman."

Abueva was secretary to the 1971 constitutional convention. A year later, disgraced president Ferdinand Marcos declared Martial Law, and proclaimed "in force" the new charter by 1973.

He was also chairperson of the Legislative-Executive Military Bases Council from 1989 to 1990. By 2005, then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo named him chairperson of a consultative constitutional commission.

"My condolences to the family and friends of Dr. Jose Abueva," Supreme Court Associate Justice Marvic Leonen, who first joined UP's faculty in 1989, wrote on Twitter.

Hailing from Bohol

Abueva was born on May 25, 1928 in Tagbilaran, Bohol. He had six siblings, among them National Artist for Sculpture Napoleon Abueva. 

He held a bachelor's degree from UP, a master's in public administration from the University of Michigan as well as doctorate in political science, minor in sociology from the same institution.

"Your body is away from me, but there is a window open from my heart to yours," Rossana wrote on Facebook. 

Abueva is survived by his four children, his great grandchildren and his great grandchild. 

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