The Philippine Army’s 53rd Infantry “Matapat” Battalion (53IB) in collaboration with the Municipal Government of Dumingag, Zamboanga del Sur graced the mass graduation of 315-strong youth of Dumingag’s Genuine People’s Agenda Youth Leadership Summit (YLS) held at People’s Grandstand, San Pablo, Dumingag, Zamboanga del Sur on August 12, 2021.
The mass graduation concluded the eleven (11) batches of YLS which started in June 2021.
Dumingag mayor Joan Abejuela in her message said the YLS aimed to mold the youth to become responsible citizens and catalysts in advocating peace and development.
“Through the conduct of YLS, we transform and empower the youth in fulfilling their roles in building a morally and spiritually upright society,” said Hon. Abejuela.
In a statement, 53IB Commanding Officer Lt. Col. Jo-ar Herrera encouraged the youth to become active champions of nation-building.
“You [the youth] are the future. Always take heart in hurdling the challenges you face; through this, you will be not just the champions of this municipality, but also of our nation’s future,” said Lt. Col. Herrera.
Meanwhile, Philippine Army’s 1st Infantry “Tabak” Division (1ID) Assistant Division Commander Brig. Gen. Bagnus Gaerlan Jr. encouraged the graduates to take courage and fulfill their role as advocates of peace.
“It takes courage to stand up and speak; it takes courage also to sit down and listen. The government cannot always build the future for our youth, but we can build our youth for the future,” Brig. Gen. Gaerlan said.
Also present in the activity was Dumingag SK Federation President Leonel C. Dinawanao, Provincial SK Federation President Vergel B. Pilar, and Oplan AMUMA Executive Director Ronel C. Cabilan.
This activity was guided by the Genuine People’s Agenda pursued by Mayor Abejuela and OPLAN ‘Amuma,’ the municipality’s counterinsurgency action plan.