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The Namibian child is ‘strained’

2022-09-28  Paheja Siririka

The Namibian child is ‘strained’

City of Windhoek junior mayor Moses Fillipus believes the Namibian child is still strained and academically disadvantaged, saying robust interventions are needed at all levels to address their plight.

Fillipus said this in light of the day of the Namibian Child, which is remembered annually on 28 September. 

“For me, this is a day where the youth of the country and everyone else reaffirm unity and ensure that future leaders are well taken care of. This is an opportunity to also engage in productive discourse,” he stated.

The junior mayor, who assumed his position earlier this month, said although it is important to embrace where we come from, engaging in productive discussions is equally important.

The 11th grader said systems should be put in place which prepare children for the corporate world, and that all discussions should be around nurturing the Namibian child.

“We need to have engagements on how we will tackle pressing issues we are seeing every day, starting with Namibian children going hungry to bed and in most cases, who are academically strained. Let’s not forget the most sad and unfortunate issue happening in this country - period poverty for girls,” noted Fillipus.

Member of parliament Maximalliant Katjimune agreed with the youngster that hunger is something that needs intervention in this country.

“There is still an alarming rate of child hunger and undernourishment in the country, with undernourishment now standing at about 42.3%. Furthermore, a lot of children at the basic education level are dropping out of school due to an alarming level of multidimensional poverty in various regions and communities across the country,” he stated. 

 “The challenges that the Namibian child faces are endless, and we still have a long way to go if we are to secure a sustainable, safe and prosperous future for all Namibian children.”

The legislature plays a fundamental role in making this a reality, and there are some progressive pieces of legislation that have been passed, such as the Child Care and Protection Act, the Combating of Domestic Violence Act as well as the Combating of Rape Act, which will be amended soon. 

“This is a step in the right direction in terms of holistically protecting children, but we need to do more like enacting legislation that speaks to bridging the gap in terms of economic and social inequalities that affect children,” added Katjimune.

He said the Day of the Namibian Child is a symbolic gesture towards the commitment in fulfilling the dreams and aspirations of the Namibian child. However, this symbolic gesture has not fully translated into its philosophical and practical intention.

2022-09-28  Paheja Siririka

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