Youth advocate, journalist, and erstwhile executive director of the ARMM Bureau of Public Information, Amir Mawallil is the new head of the Office of Bangsamoro Youth Affairs. Mawallil steps into the shoes of Salic Sharief, Jr. after the former’s appointment was signed by Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman on January 12, 2016.
Hataman based his choice on Mawallil’s advocacies of youth awareness, vis a vis the numerous issues that Moro youth need to deal with. Hataman expects the new OBYA Executive Director to take the lead towards empowering the youth at all levels. It is time that the Bangsamoro youth take an active role in their communities, engaging their leaders to bring youth awareness to the fore.
“The youth is constantly faced with a lot of challenges, especially here in the ARMM where poverty has proven to be a pervasive problem,” Mawallil said. “Poverty makes our youth vulnerable, especially with the rise of extremism that preys on the youth’s idealism and hope,” he said. Add to that the clear and present danger of terrorism now targeting the youth, making Mawallil’s job cut out for him.
Mawallil believes that the youth should go beyond the education that they get from schools, and that opportunities should be provided for this, alongside the regional government’s efforts to make basic social services available to all.
“We have been working hard to provide quality services and job opportunities across the region, especially for the Bangsamoro youth,” Mawallil said. “The OBYA is committed to ensuring these efforts translate to real opportunities, which translates to the growth and development of our region.”
The young Mawallil has had years of experience in human rights work and communications, and has served as the Executive Director of the BPI-ARMM for more than three years, prior to his appointment as OBYA head.
The OBYA was established in recognition of the vital role of youth in regional development and nation building. It is mandated to develop, promote and protect the well-being of the Bangsamoro youth in various aspects, including their moral, social, and political growth as citizens. (Bureau of Public Information)