Students of the Ateneo de Manila University call for a mass student strike statement to protest the government’s response to the recent typhoons and the Covid-19 pandemic (Photo from The Guidon/ Twitter)

Palace spokesman Harry Roque said Ateneo de Manila University students who called for a strike in protest of the national government’s “criminally neglectful” typhoon and pandemic response were at risk of failing their studies.

ABS-CBN News reported Roque warning the students: “Babagsak po kayo.”

“Bilang isang dating propesor, kahit anong dahilan ng sinasabi niyong strike, ‘pag hindi kayo sumunod sa academic requirements, mawawalan kayo ng kinabukasan,” he said.

The Guidon, Ateneo’s official student publication, tweeted on Saturday a statement co-signed by hundreds of students of the university protesting the government’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic and typhoons “Quinta,” “Rolly” and “Ulysses.”

“We cannot prioritize our schoolwork when our countrymen are suffering unnecessarily at the hands of those in power. We assert that the Ateneo community must, at the moment, concentrate all efforts into helping the most vulnerable citizens of the Philippines, such as those in Cagayan, Isabela and the Bicol region,” the statement read.

The signatories pledged to “withhold the submission of any school requirements starting Nov. 18 until the national government heeds the people’s demands for proper calamity aid and pandemic response.”

The Guidon also reported on Sunday that the university had suspended classes from Nov. 16 to 21 “to give more time for both students and faculty to recover from the aftermath of all kinds of disasters around us.”

Deaths due to “Ulysses” rose to 69 on Sunday, according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.

The Covid-19 pandemic, meanwhile, has infected 407,838 people in the Philippines as of Nov. 15. John Ezekiel J. Hirro