LIVING up to his reputation as someone who gives credit where it is due, Manila Mayor Isko Moreno extolled former Mayor Alfredo S. Lim for having established the Universidad de Manila (UDM) which gives free college education for the city’s high school graduates.
In his message during the 25th anniversary celebration of the UDM, Moreno told UDM authorities, faculty members, workers and students, ‘kung meron man tayong dapat kilalanin ngayong gabi na ito, gusto ko ilagay n’yo sa inyong isipan, sa inyong puso na wag n’yong kalilimutan—itong itinatag na institusyon para bigyan ng libre at maayos na edukasyon ang ating kabataan sa lungsod ng Maynila ay ipinagkaloob at kathang-isip ni dating Mayor Alfredo S. Lim, just so you know...we should know our real history ...dahil ang hindi marunong lumingon sa pinanggalingan ay di makararating sa paroroonan.’
He added: ‘We give credit where it is due. We’re all here today because of one person’s idea or concept...Kaya tayo nagsasama-sama dito ngayon ay dahil kay Alfredo Lim na dating alkalde ng lungsod ng Maynila.’
In return, Moreno said it is now the obligation of the city government and those behind UDM, including students, to nurture and work on making the UDM better.
‘It is now our responsibility to innovate and make it (UDM) adapt to challenges to make the institution better. Sana maging tema ng silver anniversary ng UDM ay kung paano maging ka-level ng UDM ang PLM (Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila) o maging mas magaling pa pagdating ng araw. That’s a challenge for you now students of UDM,’ Moreno said.
At the end of his speech, Moreno even asked the UDM students to stand up and recite with him a pledge, thus: ‘Mayor Lim, maraming-maraming salamat sa ‘yo. Pangako naming, pagbubutihan po namin.’
Moreno said he wants to do away with the common concept that those who are studying at the PLM are better students, stressing that the professors in both schools use the same teaching materials.
‘I know all of you are dreaming of better education. D naman kailangang porke libre e pangit na. Kailangan kahit libre, maganda, maayos at mabisa,’ Moreno said, adding that he hopes to hear the topnotchers.
During the same event, Moreno opened to the public a newly-refurbished Mehan Garden for the students to enjoy, as well as the public.
‘Puwede na kayong magpagulong-gulong sa damuhan. Makasaysayan ‘to kaya sana, pag-ingatan ny’o naman. We will make it a better, ecologically-friendly open green space for our UDM students to enjoy. This is now yours. Now, you will see more in this place developments for you to enjoy,’ Moreno added.
In return, the mayor asked the public to keep the Mehan Garden clean at all times and preserve its beauty so that it may be enjoyed by future generations.
He also shared a letter from a 94-year-old grandmother from Cubao, Quezon City who expressed her gratitude to Moreno for reviving the Mehan Garden where they, during their heyday, used to stroll and have bonding activities with friends.