Bong Go

Bong Go: Probe death of Grade 5 student

October 7, 2023 People's Journal 189 views

Bong GoDURING his visit to Antipolo City to celebrate World Teachers’ Day, Senator Christopher “Bong” Go expressed his deep condolences to the family of Francis Jay Gumikib, a Grade 5 student, and emphasized the importance of ensuring that schools are safe environments for children.

“Nakikiramay po ako sa pamilya ni Francis Jay Gumikib. Nalulungkot po ako dahil dapat po ang ating paaralan ay safe environment,” said Go in an interview on Thursday, October 5, after attending the World Teachers’ Day celebrations in Antipolo City.

“Diyan nga po tayo nag-uumpisa, kaya nga po ang mga estudyante iniiwan natin diyan. Buong tiwala na iniiwan ng mga magulang sa loob po ng compound, sa loob ng classroom ng ating mga eskwelahan. Dapat po safe sila sa loob ng eskwelahan,” he added.

Go also called for a thorough investigation of the incident.

“Antayin na lang po natin ang resulta ng imbestigasyon. On top naman po ang local government, nandito po si Mayor (Casimiro Ynares III), ang ating Governor Nina Ynares na nakatutok rin po dito,” he stated.

He urged local and school authorities to look into any lapses in protocol and to conduct an immediate investigation. “Tingnan nang mabuti kung may lapses po ba sa protocol, kung kailan po ba nangyari ang sinasabing pananampal, at naimbestigahan kaagad ba ito,” Go said.

The senator also cautioned against jumping to conclusions before the official investigation, including autopsy results, are out.

“Ano ho bang cause ng death, antayin na lang po natin ang isinagawang autopsy. Huwag muna tayong magbigay ng konklusyon kaagad sa nangyari,” he advised.

Go further emphasized the role of teachers in shaping the character of students.

“Dapat po ang guro ay kayo po ang magtuturo ng tamang asal dahil paglabas po ng estudyante sa loob po ng classroom dala-dala niya ‘yan. Pansinin n’yo po mas nakikinig pa ang ating mga anak sa guro kaysa sa atin minsan. Kung ano ang sinasabi ni teacher ‘yun ang sinasabi niya – sabi ni Teacher ganito po,” he said.

The senator was also unequivocal in stating that teachers should ensure no harm happens to students while in school.

“Ang ating guro po ang dapat maging halimbawa at wala pong karapatan na manakit ang isang guro sa mga estudyante. Disiplina, marami pong paraan na turuan po ng disiplina ng ating mga estudyante. Ngunit wala pong… hindi po kasama diyan ang pananakit,” Go asserted.

He also mentioned that the Department of Education (DepEd) should ensure impartiality in the investigation.

“Going back doon sa investigation, antayin po natin kung mayroon bang mga lapses, trabaho naman po ng ating DepEd ‘yan,” said Go.

“Para walang maging bias, pwede nilang imbestigahan… Dapat po nandiyan na agad… kaya po tayo may mga schools superintendent,” he elaborated.

Go concluded by saying that the truth must come out and justice must be served for Gumikib.

“Antayin na lang po natin ang imbestigasyon at dapat po ay lumabas po ang katotohanan at mabigyan po ng hustisya ang pagkamatay ni Francis Jay Gumikib,” he said.

Reports indicate that Gumikib, a 14-year-old student at Peñafrancia Spring Valley Elementary School in Barangay Cupang, told his mother he had been physically assaulted by his teacher.

The teacher is accused of yanking Gumikib’s collar and hair before striking him on the ear. Subsequently, the young student experienced ear pain and bouts of dizziness. Due to the persistence of these symptoms and severe pain in the head, he was taken to Amang Memorial Medical Center, where his condition worsened and led to his ultimately death.

Authorities are currently awaiting autopsy results to confirm the exact cause of death. Legal proceedings, based on child abuse laws under Republic Act No. 7610, are being initiated against the teacher and will soon be submitted to the city prosecutor’s office.

Go has also been pushing for the passage of his proposed Senate Bill No. 1786, which seeks to mandate public higher education institutions to establish Mental Health Offices on their campuses.

This aligns with his belief that mental health should receive the same level of attention and care as physical health.

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