By His Excellency Bill Tweddell
Australian Ambassador to the Philippines
‘Make History. Begin the Future’ – PeaceTech’s Mass Video Conference
PUP Gymnasium, Mabini Campus, Sta Mesa, Manila
Tuesday, 19 February 2013
Magandang hapon, maayong hapon, as-salamu alaykum (Good afternoon) to all peace advocates in Marawi City, Iligan City and Metro Manila!
I am very pleased to be part of this innovative gathering of motivated and energetic young peace advocates across Manila and Mindanao.
The Australian Government is proud to have supported this event and PeaceTech’s program. Your project offers great hope for a peaceful future.
Australia’s development cooperation and interest in the peace process
Australia contributes around PhP2.2 billion a year to Mindanao - most of that goes to projects for education and building peace.
Why? Because peace and security in Mindanao benefits all of us.
During President Aquino’s visit to Australia in October last year, Australia committed to supporting peace and security in Mindanao through:
- better education,
- transparency and accountability of government, and
- strengthening communities in support to peace and stability.
Today Peace Tech brings together six thousand children from Iligan City, Marawi City and Metro Manila.
Australia is proud to be able to help you to
- communicate with each other,
- share experiences, concerns, and insights, and
- build understanding.
Motivation: Challenge young Filipinos to ‘make history and begin the future’ with Bangsamoro
Back when I was at school, my world was essentially my classroom and the friends I had in my class.
- The world was out there – it went on no matter what I did.
But you in your generation are all connected to the world like never before. And you are the ones with the energy, drive and vision to make peace a reality.
Now PeaceTech, and all of you, have demonstrated how technology can be a powerful tool for connecting people.
We are proud of you and commend you as the new generation of peace advocates.
I would also like to acknowledge the support of your teachers, the Department of Education and the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process.
For me - and perhaps for some of the other representatives here of an older generation – you are an inspiration. Your energy and enthusiasm, your genuine desire for peace, and your concrete efforts to build peace networks – all of these things are a reminder of what is possible. And these things motivate me and others to continue working to build a better future.
Kayo ang huhubog ng kasaysayan (You are making history).