Give June 16 the respect it deserves

A file picture of former student leader Edwin Siwedi holds up his picture taken on 16 June 1976 as a 19 year old student marching down the street against the apartheid regime.
A file picture of former student leader Edwin Siwedi holds up his picture taken on 16 June 1976 as a 19 year old student marching down the street against the apartheid regime.
Image: Thulani Mbele

June 16 should be a day when South Africans gather to celebrate the character shown by youth of 1976.

It is humiliating to see today's youth, wearing school uniform on this historic day, going to parties and engaging in activities not aimed at developing the youth.

June 16 1976 was about accessing education, so the youth must be driven by the need to educate themselves; such mentality will be an honour to the youth of 1976.

Celebrating the Youth Month is also about channeling young people on a right path to a prosperous future.

Community leaders, religious leaders and other stakeholders must also start programmes that will help to unlock the minds of young people.

We all have a responsibility towards building a prosperous nation.

Youth empowerment must be on top of the agenda on this day, and the government needs to redouble efforts in ensuring socioeconomic issues, such as poverty and unemployment alleviation, are being championed.

The youth of 1976 have paved the way, and the Fees Must Fall Movement was a wake-up call to the ruling party to start prioritising issues that continue to affect young people in our country.

Sizile W Mnisi

Nelspruit

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