UP Pep Squad head coach steps down following allegations of financial irregularities, emotional abuse

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, August 4) — Following reports of alleged financial irregularities and emotional abuse, Lalaine Pereña has stepped down as UP Pep Squad head coach.

In a video posted on Facebook Thursday, Pereña announced she has resigned from the post she had held since 1998.

“It’s not because that we are guilty nor we are accepting the false accusations thrown at us, but it’s because of the respect and the love that we sincerely have for UP Pep Squad that we have come to this decision to leave our positions as coaches of the team,” she said in an emotional tone.

“This is truly hurting, but I do believe that God has a divine purpose in all of these that’s been happening to us,” she added.

Pereña responded to accusations thrown at her and her coaching staff by current and former members of the team.

“I don’t think we deserve what was written about us. We won't last two decades if what we meant to do was just to abuse and take advantage of the members. We’re not perfect coaches, we all have our weaknesses, and we just trained the best possible way that we can,” she stressed.

The school's student publications, the Philippine Collegian and Tinig ng Plaridel, said that Pereña will continue to be a faculty of the College of Human Kinetics.

Two weeks ago, Tinig ng Plaridel published a two-part report detailing some excessive fines and abusive practices allegedly happening within the squad.

The UP Pep Squad currently has eight titles in the UAAP Cheerdance Competition, all of which were won under Pereña's guidance.