Kabataan Rep. Raymond “Mong” Palatino: Activist, Blogger, Legislator
Raymond “Mong” Palatino is the first and only representative of the youth in the 14th and 15th Congresses of the Philippines. As a representative of Kabataan (Youth) Partylist, Mong advocates inside and outside of the House of Representatives active youth participation in nation-building, good governance and societal change.
Mong was active in student politics when he was a student at the University of the Philippines. He was chairperson of the College of Education Student Council in 1999. A year after, he was elected chairperson of the UP University Student Council.
In 2001, Mong became the national president of the National Union of Students of the Philippines, the largest and oldest alliance of tertiary student councils and governments in the country. Along with other youth and student leaders, he mobilized and led thousands of youth from different schools in the historic EDSA 2 Uprising.
He was named “Outstanding Youth Leader for Advocacy on National Concerns” by the United Nations Association of the Philippines in 2004.
Mong was a founding member and was elected national executive vice president of Anak ng Bayan (Nation’s Youth) youth party, which later changed its name to Kabataan Partylist. When Kabataan once again decided to run in the partylist elections in 2007, Mong was elected first nominee and was eventually seated as the partylist’s representative effective after the Supreme Court decision granting additional seats to partylist representatives in Congress last 2009.
Journalist and blogger
Mong also writes for several online publications, aside from maintaining his own web blog, mongpalatino.com. He was the Philippines’ first blogger turned legislator. He was former news editor of Yehey.com and is a columnist for UPIAsia.com. He is currently the regional editor for Southeast Asia for Global Voices Online. He also writes a political column for The Diplomat.
Outstanding youth legislator
Mong was a member for the minority of the House Committees on Youth and Sports Development, Dangerous Drugs, Information and Communication Technology and Public Information.
In the short time that he assumed office in the 14th Congress, Mong was able to file various resolutions and bills on youth concerns, such as the Free Special Education Act, BPO Workers Welfare and Protection Act, Tuition Rationalization Bill, Public Libraries Act, SK Reform and Strengthening Act, among others.
For the 15th Congress, Mong plans to focus his legislative agenda on amending the Education Act of 1982, Campus Journalism Act of 1991, working for the passing of a Magna Carta of Students and Tuition Regulation Law, as well as bills and measures upholding democratic rights of students, adolescent reproductive health, and protecting and empowering bloggers and netizens.
Articles about Mong:
Blogger of the week: Mong Palatino
The World of Chairman Mong
Filipino blogger-turned-legislator on the role of youth and New Media in politics
RP’s eyes and ears in the Global Voices blog network
Rep. Raymond Palatino ng Kabataan
Mong Palatino: Mula Chairman Patungong Congressman
Bulatlat Live: Webcast Interview with Mong Palatino
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