Africa Unite in partnership with the Government Communication and Information Systems (GCIS) invited Grade 11 learners to a viewing of the President’s State Of The Nation Address at Zolani centre in Nyanga on 14 February 2013. The learners were selected from the following High schools:
- Sithembele Maliso High School in New Crossroad
- Fezeka High School in Guguletu
- Oscar Mpeta High School in Nyanga
The youth and other community members with their Councillors joined the learners. Present at the gathering, we also need to mention, were the local traditional leaders.
Before the viewing, Mr. Sikelela Zokufa of GCIS welcomed all present and summarised the previous years’ State Of The Nation Address. Zokufa mentioned the 5 priorities that were set and he was followed up by Ms. Nomsa Somdaka of Africa Unite explained why the learners were brought along. The president moved the audience when he acknowledged this gathering in Nyanga at the beginning of his speech.
The aim of hosting an event of this nature, bringing the learners to view and listen to the State Of The Nation address, is to encourage young people to participate in the national debates as informed citizens. In two weeks, the participating learners will be granted an opportunity to give feedback – to come together and analyse the President’s speech, highlighting the topics that have particular relevance to them. They will attend portfolio committees that will be deliberating on some of the issues they will have identified as of interest. Later in the year, they will reconvene and review the government’s performance.
Chairperson of Sub Council 14 Belinda Landigwe was impressed by the initiative of involving young people and emphasized the importance of active citizenship.
Africa Unite believes that informed young people make responsible citizens, and that it is our duty and social responsibility to create a platform were the youth might be informed.
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