June 16 should inspire youth

2015-06-18 06:00


The June 16 youth died for better a life.

The June 16 youth died for better a life.

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Nearly 41 years ago on 16 June 1976, there was a youth uprising in Soweto. This was evoked by the learners at the time who did not want to be taught in Afrikaans. Their struggle was against an inferior education system that was setting them up for failure.

To honour the brave learners of 1976, Youth Day is observed as a public holiday to celebrate with young people across the country.

Even though the uprising started in Soweto, it spread quickly across the country to other provinces where more young people defied Bantu Education. This was surely a catalyst for national liberation in the years to come.

As young people we only think about 16 June and what it is about when the day approaches. However we need to continuously contrast what is happening today with the events of 1976. This is a part of our history and heritage as young people. We need to draw lessons and inspiration from the youth of 1976.

However, as we all know that there are still a lot of open wounds and we cannot reflect on Youth Day without feeling pain that perhaps what those learners fought so hard against, an inferior education system for black people, is something that still exists in different forms.

Thus,starting my own company which is to represent and empower the new generation,and taking an action which is inspired by the youth back in the days. I realize that 21 years into a democracy I may be fighting the same struggles the youth of 1976 fought.

Today rural and township schools have poor infrastructure. They do not have enough teachers or textbooks. They do not have libraries and some do not even have electricity or water. Although black learners no longer have to learn in Afrikaans, the conditions under which they study still do not allow most of them to succeed.

We have huge number of graduates in South Africa without no experience and unable to get a job. Giving skills to our young brothers and sisters,and experience which will prepare them for the corporate world is my main mission with Kasi Holdings company.

When I think of 16 June I always relate to the life I’m living now, the life of an entrepreneur that fights for the better life of fellow graduates,and students abroad and strives to give more information to youth about the things our parents went through and how we should honour them.

As young people we need to continue with the struggle, especially for the mostly black working class, and cannot afford to be apolitical. As young growing entrepreneurs we can draw great inspiration from the youth of 1976. Steve Biko and his generation fought a good fight. At Kasi Holdings we always say each generation has its struggle. We have identified ours as a struggle to give our youth skills which will give them better life a struggle pioneered by the youth of 1976. That is what Youth Day means to me; it is a way to renew my hope for a better education and empowering the youtj to make a better living for them

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