03 January 2020 | Opinion
The year 2019 was one of significant change in Namibia, witnessed in various manifestations of our republican life, including the November elections.
It is pleasing to see that the nation, especially its younger members, has awoken to the realities of accountability. Rather than just selfies and Instagram photos in swimwear, young Namibians have become increasingly conscious about their socioeconomic and geopolitical surroundings.
A lot of that increased awareness surfaced in 2019, a terrible year in many aspects nationally but which proved to provide heightened attentiveness among the youth.
We have witnessed, especially within the urban youth populations, a burning desire to transform our country into one that cares for all its inhabitants regardless of race, colour, creed, or gender.
For way too long, the political elite have capitalised on the general ignorance and disinterest of the youth in national affairs. It was not until the current recession has started affecting student funding by NSFAF and youth-owned start-ups that the young people started paying attention to details of how nations are run.
We are facing many challenges as we start this new year. But while politicians are in charge of running the daily affairs of the country, the common man must not forget his role in helping making Namibia a better place.
It is not government’s responsibility to dictate our daily behaviours. When a man physically abuses his wife or a boyfriend kills his girlfriend, it is those individuals who make take responsibility – not politicians.
When young people spend the lion’s share of their time abusing drugs or alcohol, it is their own doing and not government’s. Becoming responsible citizens is an individual’s patriotic duty.
The year 2020 must see a continuation in the general awareness by all and sundry that this country needs all of us. Politicians, as elected officials, must come to the party and the rest of us must put shoulder to the wheel. That’s how nations win.