Abby Binay says DepEd granted her request to distribute school supplies in EMBO schools

Makati City Mayor Abby Binay said Wednesday that Vice President and Education Secretary Sara Duterte has approved her request to proceed with the distribution of free school supplies to students in schools located in EMBO barangays.

“It is such a relief for the city government of Makati, but most especially for the thousands of affected students and their parents who have been anxiously waiting and hoping for the favorable resolution of the impasse with Taguig on this issue,” Binay said in a press release.

“Finally, we will be able to carry out this annual tradition and ensure that the students will be ready on school opening,” Binay added.

Binay received a letter, dated August 22, from DepEd Undersecretary Michael Wesley Poa conveying the agency’s approval of the mayor’s request, including the use of school facilities in the distribution of school supplies.

The Makati mayor thanked DepEd for granting her request.

“On behalf of the city government and all the intended beneficiaries in the 14 public schools, I would like to express our heartfelt gratitude to Vice President and DepEd Secretary Sara Duterte. We are thankful that she has the best interest of the students at heart in making a prudent and just decision,” she said.

The mayor said the distribution would start immediately so that the students will have complete school supplies when classes begin on August 29.

Earlier, Makati City claimed that the Taguig City government rejected its offer to provide free school supplies to students at the EMBO schools.

Taguig City Mayor Lani Cayetano, meanwhile, said Tuesday that the Taguig local government would also provide school supplies in the 14 disputed schools.

She said a total of 201,000 learners from elementary to senior high school would benefit from the program.

“Maraming taon na din po tayong nagbibigay ng school kits sa mga minamahal nating estudyante sa Taguig, at ngayon, we are ready to do the same as we welcome all 14 schools in the EMBO areas to our Probinsyudad,” Cayetano said in a Facebook post.

(We have been giving school kits to our beloved students in Taguig for many years, and now, we are ready to do the same as we welcome all 14 schools in the EMBO areas to our Probinsyudad.)

Last week, DepEd assumed authority over the public schools affected by the Supreme Court (SC) decision on the territorial dispute between the cities of Makati and Taguig.

The 14 schools affected are: Makati Science High School, Comembo Elementary School, Rizal Elementary School, Pembo Elementary School, Benigno “Ninoy” S. Aquino High School, Tibagan High School, Fort Bonifacio Elementary School, Fort Bonifacio High School, Pitogo Elementary School, Pitogo High School, Cembo Elementary School, East Rembo Elementary School, West Rembo Elementary School, and South Cembo Elementary School.

In 2021, the SC ruled that the Fort Bonifacio Military Reservation, consisting of parcels 3 and 4, psu-2031, was part of the territory of Taguig City. The SC has also denied Makati’s motion for reconsideration in 2022 and 2023 on the matter.

Due to this, around 30,000 students coming from the EMBO schools in the ten barangays that used to be part of Makati are caught in between the two cities’ dispute.–Anna Felicia Bajo, Giselle Ombay/AOL, GMA Integrated News

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