SEVERAL WEEKS after the malicious press releases published in a mainstream tabloid, TUP Vice President for Administration and Finance Dr. John S. Imlan finally clarifies his side after granting a one-on-one interview with The Philippine Artisan during a break after the Exit Conference of the Accrediting Agency for Chartered Colleges and Universities of the Philippines (AACCUP) Team at the TUP – Taguig campus, September 21, 2007.
Alleged of being an alien, as the published article suggested that Dr. Imlan was holding a Canadian citizenship, he strongly avowed: “Hindi totoo yun (It’s not true). I am holding an immigrant status [in Canada] so I am allowed to stay there and move around but it doesn’t necessary mean that my Filipino citizenship has been withheld.” Before granting citizenship, a claimant must live in Canada for not less than three years and must pass written and oral examinations and interviews, respectively.
Dr. Imlan further stressed that during the alleged period of going there for leisure actions and activities, he was actually on Sabbatical leave to perform benchmarking of certain rules, policies, and practices from other universities and put it into practice at the TUP system, if applicable. He was granted the leave after supplying the necessary requirements set forth by the University Staff Development Committee (USDC).
When asked what he thinks would be the main reason why the issue was brought out into the mainstream press, Dr. Imlan calmly said: “May tao behind this. I believe may mga taong tinatamaan sa reforms na ipinapatupad [of the Administration and Finance Office] (Someone is behind this. There are people who were hit by reforms implemented).” He held this key position of the University in 2005.
Records from the Office of the Registrar at the Manila campus also revealed that there is no such name as Juanito Flores currently enrolled in BS Civil Engineering. “The Office of Student Affairs also released a statement that there is no religious organization bearing the name published at the tabloid,” Dr. Imlan said. He even questioned the integrity of the issue saying that he blurted out his anger and showed his samurai to scare a group of students playing volleyball when the game ball accidentally hit his car. “That’s not true as well. Hindi pa ako nakahawak ng samurai (I have never touched a samurai),” he said lucidly.
Dr. Imlan said he is still planning for his possible actions regarding the issue. He also said that Mr. Paul Gutierrez, the writer who wrote the published article, has already compromised to meet up with him personally. “But as of now, he is just communicating thru phone. I wonder when he would finally show up personally. He [Gutierrez] said that the facts were just placed in his office table so he wrote about it,” said Dr. Imlan. He also believes that this is a case of envelopmental journalism. “Syempre, alam mo naman ang ibang tao. Basta if the price is right, sulat agad (There are some writers who would write immediately if the price is right).”
In closing, Dr. Imlan said he would never give up his citizenship as a Filipino: “Wala akong plan na magpalit ng citizenship (I don’t have plans of changing my citizenship).” He said in the earlier part of the interview that even if he would be granted a Canadian citizenship, there will be no problem with his current status as the law provides for dual citizenship. “Pwede namang pag-usapan ang lahat (We can talk to iron things out). I am just following the rules and procedures to avoid graft and corruption. Sana bago natin ilabas sa campus ang mga bagay-bagay, pag-usapan [muna]. Para naman mas marami tayong marating (Hopefully before we bring out campus issues, we should talk things first so we could achieve more),” he further added.
During the closing ceremony of the AACCUP Accreditation Week at TUP-T, Dr. Gallega defended his colleague in front of the TUP-T Academic Community, guests and students with a short statement: “Pilipino si John (John is a Filipino).”
Dr. Imlan is eager to pursue further investigation on this matter so as to clarify the issue and find the person behind the circulation of the malicious allegations against him.
Article published on The Philippine Artisan, the official student publication of the Technological University of the Philippines – Taguig, Second Term SY 2007-2008.