ASEAN youth forum in Laoag cites importance of FOI

LAOAG CITY — Nearly 300 student-participants attended a youth forum held at the New Media Center of the Northwestern University here Friday.

Organized by the Philippine Information Agency (PIA), the forum aims to raise awareness on the significance, relevance, and development of nations grouped in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

The Philippines, chair of the ASEAN summit this year, is at the height of conducting an information caravan in various regions in the country.

In Laoag City, Michelle Manza, engagement lead for the Freedom of Information (FOI) program under the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO), discussed the importance of the FOI at the ASEAN youth forum.

She told participants that all government agencies must provide transparent, fast, reliable and accurate information to the citizenry.

On July 24 last year, President Rodrigo Duterte signed an executive order mandating full public disclosure of all offices under the executive branch of government.

Speakers also discussed with the students the country’s 25-year, long-term vision dubbed as “Ambisyon Natin 2040”.

The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) launched the program, aiming to “triple real per capita incomes and eradicate hunger and poverty by 2040, if not sooner”.