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According to UMC Vice-chairperson John Shu, the decision to dismiss the PPA last Wednesday was based on the group's absence from at least four consecutive meetings. Those absences violated part of the newly-ratified UMC constitution, which states that groups which miss more than two consecutive meetings without an adequate excuse are subject to Council review. UMC Chairperson Nalini Samuel said the PPA had missed over four meetings in a row and was not participating adequately in the UMC. She also added that PPA's lack of participation was not fair to other UMC groups which attend all of the meetings. The College senior said she repeatedly tried to contact the president of the PPA and informed members about the UMC meetings, but they did not come. Samuel stressed that the UMC is still united and that the PPA could apply for readmission in the fall. "This is a message to all groups to stress the importance of UMC membership," Samuel said PPA President Rebecca De Villa did not return repeated phone calls to her room over the past two days. PPA Vice President David Alas said he doesn't feel animosity toward the UMC. "I can't blame the UMC for the actions they took," Alas said. "We weren't living up to our responsibilities." He said the PPA has been reorganizing due to internal problems and has not had enough time to commit to the UMC. "I would like to see in the future that we rectify the situation, but it's not a priority," Alas said. He said the benefits of being a member of the UMC were not essential to the PPA because they are more of a support group for Philippine students than a political group. "We can't help but feel that we let them down," Alas said. Alas said the group has been having internal problems between Philippine natives and Philippine Americans and has been attempting to solve them this year. The Engineering senior added that the schism between two sects of the PPA must be filled before they can become a unified organization, adding that the upcoming board would affect the direction of the group. Shu said the decision was not easily reached. "It involved very long and deliberate debating," Shu said. "We followed the rules of our constitution." The PPA did not attend the meeting when the vote on their status was taken, Samuel said. She informed them by letter of the Council's decision. Samuel said the UMC would make every effort to contact the new board in the fall, but Alas said he does not anticipate the PPA applying for readmission until the spring.

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