‘Youths must decide’ - The Nation Online

‘Youths must decide’

 

The youth in Mzuzu have rolled out a national elections campaign, code-named Youth Decide 2019, to dial up youth energies and active participation ahead of 2019 Tripartite Elections. Our Staff Reporter JOHN CHIRWA engaged the campaign’s team leader Charles Kajoloweka on how the youth can influence political outcome and steer the country’s development agenda.

Kajoloweka: We need more young people this
time to steer development

Q

: What is this campaign all about?

A

: Youth Decide 2019 is a national campaign to amplify the voices of the youth when it comes to elections. It focuses on creating space for active participation of young people in the forthcoming elections. We want the youth to decide the future of this country in next year’s elections. The opportunity and potential is there because the youth are in majority. But to achieve that, we need first of all to organise ourselves to consolidate a powerful youth campaign.

 

Q

: Why is the Youth Decide campaign coming now?

A

:  In May 2019, Malawi will conduct tripartite elections to elect the President and Vice-President, members of Parliament and  ward councillors. Prevailing statistics show that during the forthcoming elections, the youth, aged 15-39, will constitute 39 percent of the 17.2 million population, forming a large constituent of both voters and contestants. The fact that youths constitute over 60 percent of the total Malawi’s population makes it a foregone conclusion that almost all the development challenges facing Malawi bear a youth face. Despite being in clear majority, evidence shows that most youths have not actively participated in political and governance processes in Malawi. There are fewer youthful Malawians than old people that participate in politics, especially in elections. Fewer youths than old people have contested in the presidential, parliamentary and local government elections or participate in front-line civil activism. The forthcoming elections in Malawi, therefore, presents a golden opportunity for the ordinary and marginalised young women and men who are in the majority and hungry for change to mobilise and organise themselves and reflect on Malawi’s rich political

The youth in Mzuzu have rolled out a national elections campaign, code-named Youth Decide 2019, to dial up youth energies and active participation ahead of 2019 Tripartite Elections. Our Staff Reporter JOHN CHIRWA engaged the campaign’s team leader Charles Kajoloweka on how the youth can influence political outcome and steer the country’s development agenda.

 

Q

: What is this campaign all about?

A

: Youth Decide 2019 is a national campaign to amplify the voices of the youth when it comes to elections. It focuses on creating space for active participation of young people in the forthcoming elections. We want the youth to decide the future of this country in next year’s elections. The opportunity and potential is there because the youth are in majority. But to achieve that, we need first of all to organise ourselves to consolidate a powerful youth campaign.

 

Q

: Why is the Youth Decide campaign coming now?

A

:  In May 2019, Malawi will conduct tripartite elections to elect the President and Vice-President, members of Parliament and  ward councillors. Prevailing statistics show that during the forthcoming elections, the youth, aged 15-39, will constitute 39 percent of the 17.2 million population, forming a large constituent of both voters and contestants. The fact that youths constitute over 60 percent of the total Malawi’s population makes it a foregone conclusion that almost all the development challenges facing Malawi bear a youth face. Despite being in clear majority, evidence shows that most youths have not actively participated in political and governance processes in Malawi. There are fewer youthful Malawians than old people that participate in politics, especially in elections. Fewer youths than old people have contested in the presidential, parliamentary and local government elections or participate in front-line civil activism. The forthcoming elections in Malawi, therefore, presents a golden opportunity for the ordinary and marginalised young women and men who are in the majority and hungry for change to mobilise and organise themselves and reflect on Malawi’s rich political

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