The youth is no longer afraid

12 October 2020 | Opinion

Feeling a sense of control in our lives is one of the most empowering things that we can achieve.

Young Namibians who took to the streets over the weekend to protest sexual and gender-based violence have emboldened this generation’s stake in shaping the national agenda.

The protests were riddled with mistakes, including the blatant abuse of law enforcement officers (videos circulated of protesters parading middle fingers at officers who looked on idly) and failure to obtain permission to protest.

Yet, the country’s youth and women populations are justifiably angry and their emotions showed – perhaps excessively and sometimes beyond the confines of what the law allows.

But beyond arguments of unlawfulness, there is reason why armies of young people rose up across the width and breadth of our land – and the custodians of our well-being must get off their laurels and act decisively.

What is pleasing is that the youth have woken up from their slumber to stake their claim and demand their rightful place in society.

For way too long young people have underestimated the enormous power they command and how, if used responsibly, such power can enhance the well-being of society as a whole.

Those who are appearing in court today following their arrests on Saturday have become heroes of their own generation, for they know they stood head and shoulders above their passive, favour-seeking, worshipful peers who would do nothing to upset the powers that be.

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