HONG KONG — The youth wing for the Council of Asian Liberals and Democrats, most commonly referred to as CALD Youth, elected two new officers for the year 2017-2019 during the concluding day of the newly inaugurated CALD Youth Political Academy in Hong Kong. The electing body, represented by nine out of the ten CALD full-member parties (i.e. Civil Will-Green Party of Mongolia, Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan, Singapore Democratic Party, Liberal Party of the Philippines, Democrat Party of Thailand, Cambodia National Rescue Party, Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia, Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle, and the Nation Awakening Party of Indonesia), elected Mr. Ivanpal Singh Grewal of the Parti Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia (PGRM) as the new CALD Youth Chairperson, and Ms. Yu-Jung Chen of the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan as the Secretary General.
“A huge part of the world population is really young. I always say that the youth is the biggest investors in the future, because it matters to us the most,” Grewal said. “As the newly elected CALD Youth Chair, I want to talk more about Asian liberalism, for I think, economic and social justice are not overrated liberal themes, because they are still relevant in our region today.”
Grewal has been representing his party in CALD events for the past few years and has been a significant contributor to the development not just of CALD Youth, but of the CALD network at large. Currently, he serves as the Gerakan Selangor Vice Youth Chairman, Political Secretary to the Minister of Plantation Industries and Commodities of Malaysia, Advisor to the Editorial Board of Gerakan Matters Magazine, and a columnist at the Star Online.
“As the new CALD Youth Secretary General, I will utilize this opportunity to contribute to Asian democracy,” Chen said. “Coming from a model democratic party in the region that highly values our alliances’ future, I will make sure my party, the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan (DPP) will work hand in hand with all of CALD and CALD Youth. I will encourage the entire team to focus on the importance of effective communication and true leadership,” she added.
Similar to Grewal, Chen has been an active member of her party and of CALD. She previously served as an associate researcher for the DPP, and worked at President Tsai Ing-Wen’s presidential campaign as a commissioner, and currently the Deputy Director of the Department of International Affairs of her party.
“It has been a privilege to serve CALD Youth for the last four years, as your Secretary General and eventually, your Chair,” former CALD Youth Chair, Ms, Bulgan Bayasgalant said during her farewell speech. “The work is not an easy job to do. You will have to have broad patience and dedication in order to pull this work off. Nobody said it was going to be easy, but having the opportunity to witness how CALD Youth grew, and able to influence current youth leaders, makes me nothing but grateful.”
The turnover went smoothly, and the room was left with nothing but hopes and desire to further deepen the interest of CALD Youth as an institution that aims to serve as a training ground for the leaders of tomorrow in Asia and beyond.
This post was written by CALD