Youth wings of Asian political parties recently gathered in the Philippines for a Young Leaders Workshop. Below is YD President Bryan Lims message to the participants.
To my fellow young liberals and democrats,
When I first received news that CALD has taken the initiative to organize a Youth Leaders Workshop, I knew that the youth in this region had finally found the opportunity to establish a unified political voice to clamour for political freedom and democracy.
It is indeed an exciting proposition by CALD to bring politics down to the level of the younger generation where there seems to be widespread apathy, mistrust and discontentment in our respective countries. CALDs initiative to reach out to the youth is a welcome move that we must applaud and, more importantly, take up to ensure its continuance. This will enable us to catch up with similar youth movements that are already prevalent in the United States and Europe.
The Young Democrats of the Singapore Democratic Party, one of the founding members of the Asian Youth Council of Progressive Liberal Democrats (AYC-PLD) would like to take this opportunity to express our gratitude to CALD for gathering like-minded youths from diverse cultures and social backgrounds under the same roof today to grapple with issues that affect Asian youth.
We also hope that this workshop is a stepping-stone for participants of this workshop to build up the AYC-PLD which was mooted years ago but unfortunately has not quite flourished so far.
The Young Democrats is committed to the cause of injecting more life into AYC-PLD because we believe that as one of the only two Asian members of the International Federation of Liberal Youth (IFLRY), we have come to realize the importance and benefits of political networking and alliances – be it on the regional or international stage.
Without mutual support, it is difficult for us to create the kind of political pressure needed to keep our governments attuned to our needs and aspirations, especially undemocratic ones. Hence, if nothing concrete is carried out to strengthen our political cooperation, we will continue to swim in the political backwaters for years to come, despite the fact that we belong to one of the most populated regions in the world.
We also believe that our host, KALIPI, youth wing of the Liberal Party (the other Asian member of IFLRY), will support our call for organizations attending this workshop to take up IFLRY membership to further enhance our political cohesiveness.
On behalf of the Young Democrats I pledge to work together with all of you to bring about AYC-PLDs development into an effective political voice in the region.
May you all have a meaningful and exciting conference.
Yours in solidarity,
Singapore Democratic Party