SunStar – Senate body approves bill postponing SK elections
By Ruth Abbey Gita | SunStar.com
THE Senate committee on local government approved on Friday the bill seeking to postpone the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) elections to October 2016.
Senator Ferdinand Marcos Jr., chairman of the committee, said the approval of House Bill 5209 will give Congress more time to reform its system.
“The postponement is merely a side issue. SK reform is the main concern,” Marcos said.
“We are anticipating that there will be many big changes in the system of youth representation in government. In fact, the Sangguniang Kabataan will probably be changed because we are involving other entities in the youth movement and youth representation in government,” he added.
During the hearing, Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Sixto Brillantes Jr. said the SK elections should be postponed since the current structure has yet to undergo changes.
“If we will hold this election now under the old system without the reform bill, it would be a useless expense,” he said.
Marcos said he is expecting that the Senate will begin the plenary debates on the measure by next week.
Senate President Franklin Drilon favored the postponement of the February 21 polls, saying this will give more time to introduce reforms “while saving public funds and precious time.”
“The scheduled SK election next month is just around the corner, so a decision has to be made immediately whether to allow the elections of new set of SK officers or postpone it further to October 2016 to give Congress more time to overhaul the current SK system,” he said.