Introduction of political studies as a subject in school
“All citizens shall have the right to participate in peaceful political activity intended to influence the composition and policies of the government”.
The above Article 7 enshrined in our Namibian Constitution. Therefore, all citizens including those in schools have the right to information regarding the politics of the country as they grant mandate to the politicians to protect their rights on their behalf.
Politics as a subject in schools would shed light on the Human Rights, Parliamentary Acts in relation to education and the judicial standpoint on cases concerning the education system. There is a need for the youth to take part in politics either directly or indirectly, for they are the “leaders of tomorrow”. How can they become the so-called leaders of tomorrow if they are not aware of their constitutional rights?
It is a known fact, that the majority of the Namibian youth do not take part in elections. They are not even in possession of voters cards. This shows a lack of interest in the politics of the country, which is a very vital part of their lives.
Article 17 (2) clearly states that: “Every citizen who has reached the age of eighteen (18) shall have the right to vote”.
Unfortunately, this is not the case in Namibia. This right is defied, and the politics of the country is left in the hands of the conservative older generation only. Therefore, the need to incorporate political studies in schools, as it will empower more youth to take part in important political activities such as the elections.
The History subject in schools fails to cover the whole Namibian constitutional realm, as well as the political awakening but rather focuses on the old politics of the country which is equally relevant; however there is lack of current and futuristic political consciousness. Hence, political studies will not only focus on the past but also looking forward to greener pastures.
Political studies will produce great future leaders who are fully aware of their constitutional rights, as well as obligations and duties/responsibilities which will help shape the country at large. In the same vein, it would teach obedience of the law in schools. As a result we shall have law-abiding citizens. Let us water and nurture the youth while they are seed so they grow into fruitful trees.
* Joseph Ruzendo is a teacher by profession and currently pursuing an MBA at the International University of Management.