Significance of The Youth Vote

  • Philippines arrests extremist in Malaysia resort kidnapping

    Philippines arrests extremist in Malaysia resort kidnapping

    AFP News
    Philippines arrests extremist in Malaysia resort kidnapping

    Philippine forces on Wednesday arrested a Muslim extremist believed to have taken part in the kidnapping of 21 people from a Malaysian resort in 2000, a senior commander said. Such cross-border kidnappings have become more common recently with militants from the lawless southern Philippines travelling to nearby Malaysia, where there are many dive resorts popular with foreign tourists. Nabil Talahi Idjiran, a member of the Abu Sayyaf group who took part in one such raid on Malaysia's Sipadan …

  • Hong Kong, Philippines end emotional hostage row

    Hong Kong, Philippines end emotional hostage row

    AFP News
    Hong Kong, Philippines end emotional hostage row

    Hong Kong and the Philippines announced Wednesday they had resolved an enduring and deeply emotional row over a deadly hostage crisis, allowing soured diplomatic relations to return to normal. The breakthrough came after a deal was struck on the most sensitive issues of compensation to the victims of the tragedy, which saw eight tourists from Hong Kong killed following a bus hijacking in Manila in 2010, as well as an apology. "The resolution of the incident enables the normalisation of the …

  • HK, Philippines compromise over tourist deaths

    HK, Philippines compromise over tourist deaths

    Associated Press
    HK, Philippines compromise over tourist deaths

    HONG KONG (AP) — Hong Kong and the Philippines reached a compromise Wednesday over Hong Kong's demands for an apology for the families of eight tourists killed in a bungled response to a 2010 Manila hostage-taking that soured relations. …

  • Sales of new US homes plunge 14.5 percent in March

    Sales of new US homes plunge 14.5 percent in March

    Associated Press
    Sales of new US homes plunge 14.5 percent in March

    The number of Americans buying new homes plummeted in March to the slowest pace in seven months, a sign that real estate's spring buying season is off to a weak start. The Commerce Department said Wednesday ... …

  • Early Glance: Media companies

    Associated Press

    Shares of some top media companies are mixed at 10 a.m.: Comcast Corp. rose $.18 or .4 percent, to $51.01. Walt Disney Co. fell $.20 or .2 percent, to $79.26. Gannett fell $.14 or .5 percent, to $27.01. ... …

MANILA, Philippines --- Of the 50 million or so registered voters, about half belong to the youth bloc - those aged 18 to 33 years old. Clearly, this is a formidable bloc - certainly one that candidates would want to tap.

But how much importance do young people themselves put on their voting power?

Jerom Yamat, a first-time voter, is a junior nursing student at the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila. He believes he can make a difference, and expects his peers to also take the opportunity to choose their own leaders.

"I expect more youth to be seen, I expect them to be participating, I expect them to be really getting involved and getting engaged because I want the Filipino youth to be empowered," Yamat says.

Related story: Show up or lose support, UNA tells 'common' bets

He draws inspiration from the First Time Voters Network (FTVN), which was organized to encourage young people to gain political power by voting.

FTVN coordinator Jordan Gutierrez believes public participation in governance is the only guarantee issues affecting them will get the government's attention.

The youth, he says, must take on their civic duties starting with the selection of right leaders.

He adds that more needs to be done to reverse the culture of political indifference among the youth.

"Alam natin na yung kultura ng youth ngayon may apathy, may culture of fear and silence," Gutierrez says. "Ang usual na feedback nila ay: 'Bakit pa kami boboto? Para saan pa? Ilang eleksyon na pinagdaanan pero pare-parehong tao ang nai-elect.' So ito yung pilit na linalabanan ng FTV, kaya siya nagpapatuloy."

Also read: Early media voting allowed for May polls

Tina Parina, a young English professor at the De La Salle University, admits she has no plans of voting in May because she's too busy with work. So she never even bothered to register.

But it's not just the lack of time that's stopping Parina from voting.

She relates how she lost her faith in the country's electoral system after the candidate she strongly supported in the 2010 presidential election lost.

"I don't think in this election there's somebody I am passionate about as the last elections," she said. "So that's also why I don't think it's going to be as important for me to vote."

The Commission on Elections is aware there are many young people who don't value their right to vote.

"This is why the poll body has teamed up with universities and media institutions to help entice more youth to vote," Director James Jimenez, spokesman of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) says.

"They are the ones who are very vocal about their sentiments on things going on in society," Jimenez added. "So instead of just complaining or making observations, they should take a more active role in making sure that what they want, the vision that they have should be made real and since they have a vision, it only makes sense that they take a big part in building that vision."

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

POLL
Loading...
Poll Choice Options