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ILOILO CITY, Philippines – The National Alliance of Youth Leaders (NAYL) – Visayas with its flagship voters education program, Tatak Botante (Voter’s Mark), will hold a youth forum and senatorial debate on March 30 at the University of the Philippine Visayas Auditorium, Iloilo City.
The forum, entitled “Ang Pagsusuri (The Examination),” is held in partnership with the University of the Philippines Visayas’ (UPV) Halalan Committee.
“It is UP’s mandate to participate and promote clean and honest elections. With this activity, we hope to encourage accountability from the candidates and inform the populace, in this year’s general elections,” UPV Halalan Focal Person Anna Razel Ramirez said.
The debate will be divided into two parts:
- Morning session: Dedicated for a youth forum that will discuss the role of the youth in responsible voting; Institutionalizing youth participation in inclusive governance
- Afternoon session: Senate aspirants will be asked questions by a panel composed of representatives from the youth, the media, and the academe.
“This event will pave the way for the voters, especially the youth, to be critical, wise and free in choosing the leaders they want to be elected to office,” NAYL Vice President for Social Media and Marketing Gienno Nebris said.
Among the senatorial candidates who confirmed their attendance for the debate are Partido Galing at Puso candidates Roman Romulo, Lorna Kapunan, Edu Manzano, Walden Bello, and Samuel Pagdilao.
The event aims to gather over 2,500 attendees from the youth, the media, the local government units, and the academe.
‘Tatak Botante: Ang Pagsusuri 2016′
Ang Pagsusuri is a series of convocations with senatorial candidates aimed to provide an avenue for students to scrutinize public officials, establish an opportunity for the candidates to present their platforms, and create a social contract where the candidates will be accountable to the youth.
Established in 2012 in UP Diliman, Tatak Botante was originally a voter registration and education program that evolved into events that seek to encourage the youth to participate in the country’s electoral system.
Specifically, it calls for the Filipino youth to be involved in three aspects:
- Registration, as a means to have the eligibility to vote in the national and local elections
- Acquisition of knowledge regarding the nature of the electoral system and the nature of the politics in the country, including the profiles and platforms of the candidates in a micro and macro setting
- Casting of the votes and the pledging of the commitment to be vigilant – from the declaration of the winners to the end of their terms
Youth leaders taking the lead
NAYL is an alliance of student leaders from different colleges and universities across the Philippines.
“We hope to provide a venue for public officials to tackle their plans and platforms, as well as share their stand and thoughts on different issues concerning the youth. In return, we hope that the youth could scrutinize the candidates,” NAYL VP for External Affairs Tina Daguno said.
She added: “This way, we can be critical about the socio-political issues surrounding us and foster participatory, responsive and ethical governance.”
NAYL pioneered budgetary reforms in education, and other related issues, through the active consultation and coordination with various youth groups and the formulation of resolutions that may be lobbied by various institutions. – Rappler.com
Russel Jude Mendez Patina is one of Rappler’s lead Movers for Iloilo. He is a freelance writer.