BAGUIO CITY – The City Council approved on first reading a proposed ordinance institutionalizing the celebration of Kaigorotan Youth Week and annually appropriating the amount of P40,000 in the budget of the local government for the said purpose.
The ordinance authored by Councilor Peter Fianza stated that noting the annual celebration of the Kaigorotan Youth Week with various activities undertaken in accordance with formulated themes, the local government is compelled to extend support to sustain the activities which were observed to have affirmed that the imagination, ideals and energies of the youth are vital for the continuing development of the societies in which they live.
Under the provisions of the proposed ordinance, the first official week of March annually will be declared as Kaigorotan Youth Week with activities being allowed to be undertaken at any day or duration of the whole month.
Aside from the free use of available venues and resources, the ordinance added that the amount of P40,000 will be allocated annually following the approval of the local legislative measure to fund activities as shall be allowed pursuant with law to be included in the budget of the Office of the City Administrator which shall coordinate and facilitate the approval and implementation of programmed activities as done with other institutionalized activities of the city.
Fianza claimed the regular coordinators of the celebration shall continue to formulate the plans for the annual celebration unless or until the creation of new groups or committees for the purpose as recognized stakeholders for the celebration may direct.
Resolution No. 120, series of 1993 obviously recognized significant collective actions of the Cordillera Youth for a decade or two declared March 1-5, 1993 as Indigenous Youth Week that started the annual celebration of the same up to the present.
Unfortunately, he claimed that the annual celebration which latter evolved as Kaigorotan Youth Week was only provided funding assistance in the initial year of celebration with an amount of P10,000 to sponsor the activities in connection with the said events.
In 2014, Ordinance No. 11, series of 2014 recognized Kaigorotan Youth Week activities which were assisted simply with waiver of fees on electricity and of the place of activity.
For this year’s celebration on the theme “Tignay Agtutubo: Living the Tradition of Courage and Unity! Advancing the Struggle for Land, Life and Resources,” as contained in the project proposal submitted by the regular coordinators of the activities, it appears that funding assistance cannot again be extended to the activities for want of an allocation for the purpose.
Fianza underscored that growing interest and participation in the celebration has greatly expanded activities that will have to be supported not only by the local government but also concerned government agencies to aggressively empower the youth in the region to be actively involved in the conduct of major events that will serve as an avenue for them to air their sentiments regarding the prevailing issues in the local and national levels.
The local legislative body is expected to deliberate on the matter for second and third readings once the concerned committee will be able to formulate its report on the matter.
By Dexter A. See