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Lyceum Graduate Says She Was Sexually Harassed By Former Dean

"He tried to grab my face and said 'Pa-kiss nga.'"
by F. Valencia
February 11, 2017
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Last February 6, KV Rojas, an international relations graduate of Lyceum of the Philippines University-Manila (LPU), wrote a two-part Facebook post alleging that she was sexually harassed by Reynaldo Arcilla, who is now the former dean of the College of International Relations.

In her post, Rojas also laments that LPU mishandled the case. As of 7 a.m. on Saturday, February 11, Rojas' post has been shared 1,159 times.

According to Rojas, the incident happened on December 2, 2016. That day, she had gone to LPU in Intramuros right after work. She was there to get a recommendation letter from Arcilla, which she needed for her application to graduate school.

Later, Arcilla offered her a ride home and Rojas agreed to be "dropped off [on] Coastal." Rojas writes that as they were walking to leave the campus, Arcilla held her elbow and said, "Dito kita [ra-rape-in]. (I will rape you here.)"

"I gave him a quizzical look and said, 'Sir?'" Rojas writes, "Medyo kinabahan na ako nun pero nung nakita ko may tao naman...naging okay naman ako. (I got nervous but when I saw that there were people around, I thought I was going to be okay.)"

Both Arcilla and Rojas still headed for the parked car. Rojas accounts: "The driver was already inside, we took a seat but apparently the [dean] left his [iPad] in the office, [so] the driver went to get it."

"We were alone inside the car," she continues. "He suddenly said, 'You really turn me on.' I was in complete shock and was not able to say anything. He tried to grab my face and said 'Pa-kiss nga.' I refused. The driver came in. I was already scared but I thought the dean will not do any inappropriate behavior in front of his driver. We're finally outside Lyceum. The dean grabbed my hand and said, 'Bakit ang lamig ng kamay mo, kinakabahan ka sa akin, noh? (Why is your hand cold? You're nervous around me, aren't you?)' I said, 'No, sir' and [pulled] my hand [free]."

Read Rojas' full account below:

Rojas seems to have been criticized by people for not doing enough to pursue her case against the former dean. She has posted another statement on Facebook to address this issue. In it, she explains, "I am a full-time employee, and I had to be absent from work to go to those offices. I brave the traffic and get home late, and at the same time I was reviewing to prepare for graduate school. I thought I could not let this happen get in the way of my dream to pursue further studies."

Read her full explanation below:

Meanwhile, a Rappler report quotes a statement from Sandra Recto, LPU Director of Communication and Public Affairs. She pointed out that the university "does not condone nor tolerate any form of sexual harassment and we continue to uphold the virtues of Dr. Jose P. Laurel in seeking the truth and acting with fortitude in the service of God and country."

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