by Nomathemba Zondo | NUST-ZW
As I write this piece today, I feel that we as a country and our media have failed to fully commemorate this year’s day of the African Child. Politics and economic crisis have turned to overshadow the day of the African Child.
It is because of the dire economic situation in the country and the political instability which is being influenced by the approaching 2018 Presidential Elections that we have almost forgotten to remember the day of the African Child. It is not only important to us as an African country but all other African countries too.
Yes we continue to celebrate the landmark Constitutional Court ruling that has outlawed marriage of children under the age of 18, but let’s not forget that child marriages have not yet been criminalized. There is still a need for us to engage in advocacy efforts to ensure the realignment of the laws to the Constitution and criminalise child marriages. Isn’t this day supposed to address such an issue?
Unfortunately, no one cares the media does not care the only concern is our economy and who is the next successor after president Mugabe but the question is, what are we saying about the future generation of the country? When are we then going to empower them since we have neglected this day and deemed it less important than other issues. After all, this is the future of tomorrow.
I believe this day was supposed to be used to advocate and empower the African child so that they can have a brighter future. The economic crisis we are in right now was caused by some decisions made by the older generation and we surely do not want the same mistakes to be made by some generations to come.
In commemorations like these, the media is supposed to cover as many stories to do with the African child as possible. I would not be surprised to hear some saying they are not even aware of the day of the African Child because our media which is supposed to keep us informed has shifted its focus to cover stories that will only sell the newspaper and not solve the situation.
We need to empower the young generation, it is the future of tomorrow. Let us remember and encourage the African child. A better tomorrow is possible!
Images Creds: fanpop.com & unicef.org