The National Youth Commission (NYC) on Tuesday, August 15, highlighted the importance of engaging the Filipino youth in the efforts of the Duterte administration to achieve lasting peace in the country.
In a press briefing in Malacañan, NYC Chairperson Aiza Seguerra announced the Commission’s request to be part of Task Force Bangon Marawi, an inter-agency unit created for the recovery, reconstruction, and rehabilitation of Marawi City and other affected localities.
“I think it’s very important na magkaroon po ng youth lens ang rehabilitation. Ika nga… ‘pag sinabing “rehabilitation,” sana hindi lang po ma-focus sa infra, dun sa mga bagay na mahahawakan natin,” Seguerra said.
“Pero I think… mas essential po ang rehabilitation ng kaluluwa. Mas essential ang rehabilitation ng psychosocial ng mga kabataan natin ngayon. Because like what the manifesto said, ayaw po natin ma-turn sila ulit,” Seguerra said, referring to the Youth Manifesto for Just and Lasting Peace presented at the 2017 International Youth Day Celebration in Iligan City on August 13.
The manifesto called for the integration of peace education in all schools, including alternative learning institutions, indigenous schools, and madaris.
According to Seguerra, they have yet to receive formal invitation to join the Task Force.
“We got an email — not really a formal invitation yet, but the email would suffice. Pinapapunta kami to Marawi to check out the evacuation centers,” the NYC chair said.
In addition, Seguerra said NYC is working closely with Office of the Bangsamoro Youth Affairs.
“Para siyempre, magkaroon din ng aspeto na… May mga bagay kaming hindi alam because of culture tungkol sa ating mga Bangsamoro youth. So we are working closely with them also,” Seguerra said.
During the press briefing, the NYC official cited the importance of the youth’s involvement in governance, noting that Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections should push through this year.
“So kami po ang hinahabol po namin dito ay representation. It is very important na may representation ng kabataan hanggang sa ating mga barangay,” Seguerra said.
“So sana po, kung ayaw nilang ituloy ang barangay, maintindihan namin. Pero sana, kahit ‘yung SK naman, sana ‘yung SK ibigay na po sa amin. It’s been years,” Seguerra added.
The House Committee on Suffrage and Electoral Reforms has approved a bill postponing the SK polls to next year.
“And if ang fear nila ay mangyari ‘yung mga dating kinatatakutan nilang mangyari, that’s why there is a reform. Binago na po ang SK ngayon. Please give SK a chance,” the NYC chair added.
Seguerra, however, clarified that whether or not the SK elections will take place this year, the NYC will ensure that the youth will be properly represented in the affairs of the government.
“And ang maganda naman po kahit papaano ay through the LYDOs, we will be able to roll out all these programs and policies,” Seguerra said, adding that barangay development on youth has been established.
NYC invites Filipinos to watch Sine Kabataan short film competition
Meanwhile, Seguerra announced the commencement of the Sine Kabataan Short Film Competition from August 16 to 22 where 12 short films will be featured.
“Inilunsad po ng National Youth Commission ang Sine Kabataan Short Film Competition nearly two months ago upang mapatunayan po na ang pelikula ay isa sa mga epektibong daan para maipahayag po ng mga kabataan ang kanilang mga saloobin tungkol po sa mga issues that affect the Filipino youth,” Seguerra said.
“Ang mga short films po na nai-submit sa National Youth Commission ng mga kabataan ay tunay na malikhain at may kamulatan sa mga nangyayari po sa kapaligiran,” Seguerra added. “Marami pong mga youth issues na matatalakay sa mga pelikula na ito and I hope you all take it with a grain of salt.”
Tourist arrivals up in first half of 2017
During the same press briefing, Presidential Spokesperson Abella announced that tourist arrivals in the country increased by 12. 7 percent during the first half of this year.
He cited a data from the Department of Tourism which recorded that from January to June this year, foreign tourist arrivals reached 3,357,591, up by 12.7 percent compared to the same period in 2016.
“We attribute this to the performance of the government’s hard work in improving the country’s image and infrastructure of maintaining a safe and relaxing environment,” Abella said.
With regard to the bird flu outbreak, Abella said the Palace sympathizes with the plight of poultry farmers and the poultry industry following the drastic measures that were implemented to contain and eradicate the country’s first avian flu outbreak.
“Despite their lack of personnel, we urge DA and BAI to expedite the various clearing to minimize the losses and hasten the recovery of the poultry industry,” Abella said. ### (PND)