WINDHOEK, 02 SEP – The just-ended second session of the Junior National Council (JNC) left participants with mixed feelings, with some saying they are not accorded a platform to air the challenges they face in their respective constituencies.
Moreover, some junior councillors complained that their two-year term is insufficient to see through the full implementation of their resolutions and proposals.
Speaking to Nampa on Friday, Tuwilika Bonifatius from the Ohangwena Region complained that motions were being imposed on them by the organisers.
“These people were supposed to let us say the problems that we have in our regions instead of discussing motions that we don’t know,” Bonifatius said.
According to Bonifatius, there is little if any development happening in her region.
“In our regions, there is no improvement. Nothing is coming up because we don’t get a chance to talk,” she claimed.
She bemoaned the lack of proper school infrastructure, unavailability of computers and shortage of basic amenities at schools as some of the key issues in her region.
“We don’t even have internet connectivity. We don’t even know how to open a computer. We are behind. I think the development is just in Windhoek, nowhere else,” she asserted.
The 17-year-old then proposed that the JNC term be extended to five years to give the junior councillors ample time to address issues affecting them.
Several councillors on the other hand, appreciated the platform presented by the JNC.
One such councillor was Rachel Lazarus, who said out of 11 resolutions they took in 2017, six of them were implemented – which is a step in the right direction.
On the challenges facing rural schools, the Andimba Toivo Ya Toivo Senior Secondary School learner said it was up to them to make do with the meagre resources at their disposal.
“What is important is not the buildings. What is important is the teacher and the learner,” stated Lazarus.
Mika Shuudeni from Kavango East heaped praise on the JNC, saying it gives them an opportunity to voice their plights and bring forth solutions.
“The session is important because it is empowering us to have a voice in Parliament and to speak on behalf of our fellow youth that are unable to come here,” he said.
The two-day session concluded on Friday.
It discussed topical issues such as human trafficking and cyber-crime, youth participation in the national budgeting process and their involvement in the extractive industry in a bid to enhance their economic and social development.