Newbies proud for leaving their mark

2019-05-14 06:01
First-time voters Duane van der Berg and Ashwin Jansen are proud to have made their mark.PHOTO: thabang kuaho

First-time voters Duane van der Berg and Ashwin Jansen are proud to have made their mark.PHOTO: thabang kuaho

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With the 2019 general elections that took place last week, it would come as no surprise that first-time voters were excited to make their cross on ballot papers for the first time.

In an area prone to crime and unemployment, two young people were determined to make sure they have a say in who runs the country in the next five years.

Ashwin Jansen (19) and Duane van der Berg (25) said casting their votes for the first time was one of the most exciting and responsible things they have ever done in their lives.

Jansen said that voting for the first time made him feel like he invoked his civic duty and that he has the power to hold politicians accountable for their actions, if they fail to fulfil their promises.

“Because I have voted, I will keep the politicians to account and if they fail to live up to their promises, I will definitely change my vote next time,” he said.

He further said voting for the first time gave him a sense of pride.

Jansen was disappointed by the low turnout of youth at the polling stations.

“The process was quick, smooth and very easy. I was, however, disappointed to notice that not a lot of young people came to vote, the majority of the voters were senior citizens,” he said.

Van der Berg said voting was important for young people because they hold the power to change the status quo of the country.

“For young people, we should know that the future of the country depends on us and the decisions we make currently,” he said.

“Everyone is fighting for land, jobs and housing; and this is the only way that you can make your voice heard.”

He said there is no right or wrong party to vote for.

“Every party has certain things they stand for and all you have to do is educate yourself with the different manifestos and decide which party is best to vote for.”

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