Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III on Thursday clarified he was proposing to have board and bar exams studied and not abolished.
“My proposal is for the Philippine Nurses Association (PNA) and Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) to study it. I didn’t propose scrapping,” Bello said in an interview on ANC’s Headstart.
“I’m not proposing to scrap, I’m proposing especially to the to Philippine Nurses Association and Board of Nursing to study, and that applies to others, [such as] Board of Engineering na pagaralan nilang mabuti (study it carefully),” he said.
“I’d rather trust the product of an eight-year course than one-day exam,” Bello added.
Bello earlier raised the idea of graduates not taking board and bar exams since they have already studied for years.
“Bakit kelangan pa ng examination? (Why is there a need for an examination?)” the Labor chief asked.
Bello clarifies he wants board and bar exams studied, not scrapped
“Tutal ang estudyante four years pre-law, four years proper. Dadaan ka sa rigorous scrutiny graduate ka ‘tas dadaan ka pa sa bar? (In fact, a student takes four years of pre-law and another four years of law proper. They undergo rigorous scrutiny, and then they will have to take the bar?),” Bello said.
Meanwhile, Chief Justice Alexander Gesmundo opposed the proposal of Secretary Bello.
“I don’t see the need to abolish the Bar exam. We must continue having the Bar exam,” Gesmundo said in an ambush interview at an event in Manila.
“I respect the view of Secretary Bello, but as far as the practice of law, I think we should maintain the Bar examinations so that we can sift those who are competent, considering the nature of the legal profession.”
The Philippine Nurses Association (PNA) also rejected the DOLE chief’s idea.
“Hindi puwede ‘yan, buhay kasi ang hinahawakan namin eh [That can’t be because lives are in our hands]. We need to ensure that health professionals are competent enough,” PNA national president Melbert Reyes said.