MANILA — The Senate on Monday passed on third and final reading a House bill postponing the elections for the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) from February 21 this year to the last Monday of October 2016.
With 14-0 vote, the Senate approved House Bill No. 5209 which suggests that more time be allotted the SK restructuring and reforms before the holding of an election.
“Elections can wait. Both chambers are working overtime to put reforms in place. Holding the SK elections without these reforms will render all efforts made by legislators useless,” Senator Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr., sponsor of the measure, said.
Marcos, chairman of the Senate committee on local government, stressed that the youth plays a significant role in community affairs, policy-making and public governance.
“The Sangguniang Kabataan must first be reformed and restructured in order to effectively represent the needs and concerns of the youth sector. We need to prepare the significant legislation that would institute meaningful, timely and viable reforms in the SK,” Marcos said.
To institute reforms in the SK, Marcos has filed Senate Bill No. 2401 or known as the Youth Development and Empowerment Act of 2014, which seeks to amend the age of SK officials from 15 to 17 years old to 18 to 24 years old.
The bill also seeks to provide trainings to professionalize and make the elected SK members aware of the responsibilities they face and enforce anti-dynasty measures down to the barangay level.
Senator Paolo Benigno “Bam” Aquino IV, chairan of the Senate committee on youth, said SK reforms are needed to make the youth become “better and more effective public servants in the future.”