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ASEAN Party-List must have a Spot in Congress!


Perhaps, the one party-list that really attracted me in supporting is the Academicians, Students and Educators Alliance (ASEAN). It further solidify the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), an international agreement for child rights.

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Under the terms of the convention, governments are required to meet children’s basic needs and help them reach their full potential. Central to this is the acknowledgment that every child has basic fundamental rights and these are the right to:

  • Life, survival and development
  • Protection from violence, abuse or neglect
  • An education that enables children to fulfil their potential
  • Be raised by, or have a relationship with, their parents
  • Express their opinions and be listened to

Let me focus on the third right, am education enables children to fulfill their potential. That is where ASEAN Party-List can do.

With the promising vision that the said Party-List has and when in Congress, ASEAN will push for the interests of Students, Out-of-School-Youth, Educators, Parents, OFWs and Professionals.

In an intimate forum with Professor Win Ballada, chairman and first nominee for ASEAN Party-List on May 4, Saturday, he presented the group’s platforms:

  • Access to Education, Adopt-A-Student- Act, Faster and Cheaper Internet, Free WiFi in Schools
  • Scholarships, Subsidies and Support for Reviewees, Students and Educators, Salary Upgrades for Educators;
  • Employment, Entrepreneurship, Ease of Doing Business, OFW Reintegration, Enhanced TESDA, all for Economic Development;
  • Anti-Corruption, Anti-Red Tape, Pro-ASEAN integration, Amend CPD, Accountability in Government Service
  • Nation-Building, Nominees are CPA-Deans, Educators, Book Authors, Practitioners and HR Professional

There were two points that caught my interest. First the establishment and enhancement of public libraries via the Enhanced Public Libraries Act and the OFW Reintegration Act.

The first one that hit me is the need for any local public library to attract today’s younger generation to love going to the libraries and read, read and read; not just depend on the Net alone.

For him, the Generation Zers could be a challenge in implementing the Enhanced Public Libraries Act. How would he intend to implement it? He considered it as a twin bill–pass the free WiFi as the data infrastructure. The physical infrastructure will follow–the materials, the employees as the brick and mortar way because he doesn’t believe that today’s students can rely on smartphones alone in gaining knowledge. He wants to add more public libraries in the city that is accessible of course to all students and out-of-school youth.

According to Ballada, the OFW Reintegration Act was an idea of the party’s third nominee Dr. Christopher Biore, CPA, MBA, a Dean, an Advocacy Projects Mentor and a Book Author. He was able to incubate a lot of business ideas that won in competitions abroad. His works were tested in the Univedrsity of Cebu. Though ASEAN hasn’t really worked hand in hand with any government agency or with Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA)–the group is confident enough that they can facilitate the vision in providing business concepts to returning OFWs and invest and grow the money they earned while working across the globe.

ASEAN is worthy of a spot in Congress in the interest of the nation’s improvement in education. Vote for the Party with number 23 this coming Monday, May 13.

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What is Vico Sotto’s Agenda?


To most people outside of Pasig City, Vico Sotto is perhaps another familiar personality who wants to break into the political scene. However, to Pasiguenos, he’s the contrary and he’s their deliverer. Apart from being the son of Philippine TV noontime variety host Vic Sotto and seasoned, multi-awarded actress Coney Reyes, Vico is no stranger to the said field of politics.

According to him, he was exposed to governance through his half-brother LA Mumar, who’s 11 years senior than him, “He was one of my biggest influences is my LA. Whatever he learned from his classes in college, he was pursuing developmental studies, he would teach it to me and he would even make a quiz from what he taught me to see if I really did read and understand what I was reading.

Vico Sotto

“The very early age, I was already exposed to government-related subjects. Though I was only 10-11 years old and didn’t have the grasp of the matter, still the interest didn’t wane. It further developed my passion for good governance.”

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Sotto finished AB Political Science at the Ateneo de Manila University and earned his Master’s Degree in Public Management at Ateneo School of Government as well. He served his first term as councilor for Pasig and succeeded in promoting and passing the Pasig Transparency Ordinance, the first local law on Freedom of Information in Metro Manila.

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As a mayoralty candidate to the Eusebio-ruled city, he knew in his heart that he is up for a great challenge, but he is someone who will stand and fight against anything that is irregular in governing the city. For him, it’s about time for new breed of leaders like him, new, fresh and who aren’t disillusioned about politics who will stand for better ways of governance.

Most politicians during campaign period, they are ‘OPMs’ short for ‘Oh, Promise Me’, is he like them?

He was quick to say that he is not the type to make many promises, but what he assures his constituents in Pasig that with his number one commitment, “Wala pong mapupunta sa sa bulsa ko kundi ang suweldo ko.”

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At 29, he is not the type who will back out due to threats and coercions. He is committed to standing up for what is right. What he banked on is the piece of advice that his parents (Vic and Coney) always remind him of–is to pray al the time and never forget God.

He is aware that going up against the Eusebios is a great challenge because of his opponent’s well-oiled machinery. He painted scenarios that even in posting tarpaulins and other campaign paraphernalias are all over the city especially in houses whether these stuff have  permission to post or not. But, one thing for sure is that he saw Pasiguenos are all ready for a leap of change.

His slogan: ‘Walang palakasan, walang pananakot, malinis na gobyerno’ is stronger than any existing political machinery that his opponent has.

What is admirable about this young politician is his belief on people’s participation council, “Naniniwala po ako na ang susi sa inklusibong (inclusive) pag-unlad ay ang pakikilahok ng taumbayan sa paggu-gobyerno.

“Puwede kasing magkaroon ng pag-unlad ang isang lungsod na hindi naman kasama ang nasa laylayan. May mayayaman pero ang mahihirap, mahihirap pa rin. Kaya dapat ang pag-unlad natin yung inklusibo.”

Learn more about Sotto’s BIG V AGENDA:

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To know more about him, log on to his official facebook page.

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