House panel postpones SK polls to 2016

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THE House of Representatives has postponed the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections scheduled next month to October 2016.

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The House Committee on Suffrage and Electoral Reforms agreed to postpone the SK polls through an 8-1 vote.

Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes, Jr. batted for the deferment of the youth polls, saying barangays “can be ran well even if there is no representation from the SK,” Brillantes said.

The Comelec chief has been strongly advocating for the abolition of the SK, saying it has transformed into a breeding ground for corrupt public officials.

He said that the poll body will save at least P90 million if the SK polls are deferred.

“If we proceed with the SK polls, we will be forced to use our savings since our budget is only P2.88 billion,” Brillantes told lawmakers.

However, the House bill postponing the SK polls will have to be reconciled with the measure authored by Sen. Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. which only postpones the SK polls for a year and retains the incumbent SK officials.

“The House version differs from the Senate version. But definitely we are firm that it should be postponed for three years because we don’t have a budget for election in 2014 since we just finished the 2013 polls. We can’t also hold it in October 2015 because it would be too close to the May 2016 Presidential elections,” Brillantes said, adding that the President should certify the bill as urgent.

“If that certification [of urgency]happens, we won’t spend anymore kasi siguradong lusot na (because postponement is almost certain),” he said.

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  1. Scrap this Sangguniang Kabataan, a youth organization which serves no other purpose but be pawns of the incumbent mayors or governors. It’s also a training ground for corruption since these young people see how public officials steal pork funds through kickbacks and overpricing of poorly constructed projects. The cost of holding elections for this youth organization SK is just a waste of public money which could otherwise go to healthcare, food for the hungry or education.