Youth encouraged to be ambassadors of SA

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Communications Minister Nomvula Mokonyane has called on young people to be ambassadors of a flourishing South Africa. 

Speaking to youth at the Bantu Church of Christ’s Youth Festival at the Morris Isaacson High School in Soweto on Friday afternoon, Mokonyane urged young people to be ambassadors of a democratic country. 

The Minister referred young people gathered at the church’s 26th festival to the legacy of struggle heroes like Solomon Mahlangu. 

“You must be ambassadors of South Africa,” she told the packed hall at the school.

The Minister referred the youth congregated at the festival to the example of struggle hero Solomon Mahlangu who died fighting for the right to vote.

Mahlangu, was hanged by the apartheid government on 6 April, 39 years ago.

She urged the youth to get their IDs and vote in the 2019 elections as a way of getting their voices heard.

Turning her attention to the country’s youth unemployment problem, Mokonyane said initiatives like the Youth Employment Services (YES) launched by President Cyril Ramaphosa are a response to the issue.

“We can’t allow young people to remain unemployed while they are qualified,” she said.

She said that as the world was moving in the space of the Fourth Industrial Revolution which will require new skills sets, indigenous knowledge must not be left on the back burner.

“We need the youth to have skills,” she said, while also reiterating President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Youth Day call for business to take on young graduates who may not necessarily have the experience required in the workplace.

Review of broadcasting policy

The Minister, who was warmly received with a round of applause at the 26th edition of the festival, urged the youth to form part of the broadcasting policy review. In June, the Minister announced that the review of the policy will commence with the review of the public broadcaster, the SABC.

She appealed to the youth to add their voice to the review process.

In June, Mokonyane said the review process will commence with the review of the public broadcaster and the frameworks that govern it.

“We have already issued a notice inviting stakeholders to submit issues for consideration on matters pertaining to its mandate, funding model, including TV license fees, governance and accountability measures,” she said at time.

Social ills

She called on the youth not to be gullible to everything that they see on social media television or hear on the radio such as instances where churches have encouraged their congregants to eat grass or drink petrol.

Instead Mokonyane urged young people to be proud of their heritage and to not fall prey to cyberbullying.

While making use of social media platforms, young people should follow people they know on a personal basis and not “follow strangers”, she said.

The national youth festival was established in 1992 with an aim to involve the youth in church activities and to create a layer of the next generation who would benefit from institutional history. -