DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / May 20, 2009) - A TOMY (Ten Outstanding Muslim Youth) awardee has urged the country's youth, especially his fellow Muslims, to register and vote for the coming 2010 national elections.
Lawyer Datu Reza Cang Sinsuat, corporate secretary of the Davao-based Southern Philippines Development Authority, said the youth should exercise their right to vote and should show their elders they are capable of correctly choosing the future leaders of the country.
Sinsuat said: "The youth must take part in the coming electoral exercise because the biggest issues of governance have direct effects on us. What is often ignored and neglected is sometimes the solution to our age-old problem. Exercising ones right to vote is like creating a glimmer of hope in our war-torn homeland."
"The youth is one of the most potent sectors of our country that can push our nation toward unity and progress. I believe we possess the wisdom to elect who could bring us lasting prosperity and stability; a candidate wisely elected, who is sensitive, reflecting the hopes of all Mindanaoan,"Sinsuat said.
A graduate of Ateneo de Manila School of Law and a political science graduate of De Lasalle University, Sinsuat said that he plans to spearhead a youth movement that would campaign for active participation in the coming polls.
The existence of armed conflict and resulting massive displacement of Muslims, indigenous people and Christians alike in Mindanao can be addressed with the active participation of the youth electorate in voting the candidate that would address peace and development, among others, he said.
"I know there are other youth groups already mobilized for this purpose. If ever, it is best that cooperation will be established to unify the youths' effort to have one goal and show one voice- that of pushing for our rights to choose the responsive and publicly accountable leaders," he added.
Sinsuat is a Fulbright scholar who finished his Executive Masters degree in Public Administration in Maxwell School of Citizenry and Public Affairs at Syracuse University in New York two years ago. (Candido Aparece Jr.)