An open letter to SK voters
To my fellow millennials,
In a few days’ time, we will be choosing youth leaders in our respective communities through the 2018 barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections. How important is the SK in our communities?
It is a mandate under the 1987 Constitution that “the State recognizes the vital role of the youth in nation-building … It shall inculcate in the youth patriotism and nationalism, and encourage their involvement in public and civic affairs.”
Perhaps, the aforementioned provision of the Constitution is the very reason why we have the SK in our barangays. Hence, it is not just a mere training ground, but an avenue for the youth in taking an important role in our communities. However, what part does the SK play in nation-building?
Our great national hero Dr. Jose Rizal said that, “The youth is the hope of the nation.” Maybe Rizal meant that the youth is the nation’s key to success. On the other hand, it is common that SK chairpersons and their councilors promote youth involvement in the community through “paliga sa barangay” or basketball tournaments, sportsfests or beauty pageants during Araw ng Barangay or fiestas. How are these activities even relevant to the nation’s success? Perhaps, these events promote camaraderie among the youth in the barangay?
On May 14, it is now our chance to make “change” happen as electorates. We should keep in mind that the SK has been allotted an ample amount of money by our barangays and by the government, not only to promote sportsmanship among the youth in the community. The vital role of the SK in nation-building is to promote advocacies that are relevant and to address pressing issues involving us.
We should choose young leaders who promote awareness on drugs, teenage pregnancy, and other issues affecting us. We should select a youth representative who believes in youth empowerment, calls for gender equity, discourages discrimination, promotes unity, and advocates protection of our beloved Mother Earth.
My fellow millennials, we have to do our part in making this “change” happen by voting for young leaders who are capable enough, and not by choosing them through “tropahan,” “barkadahan,” or popularity. The future of the youth of this nation is on the tip of our pens, so we have to vote wisely!
EDWARD JOHN NEROSA, [email protected]
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