Youth Alert 18 August 2010

Youths Have the Lowest Turn out in Constitutional outreach meetings –  The Constitutional select committee on the constitution (COPAC) has release statistics of attendance at the constitutional out reach meetings held all over the country so far. The findings are quite disappointing especially noting that these meetings are meant to be held once in each area and those who have failed to make their views known then have missed out for good.

Youth attendance is the lowest and this is a cause for concern especially sighting that young people have the most to lose or gain from the success or failure of this process. While women have the highest attendance figures, the reports from different parts of the country state that many of these women have either refused to say what they want or have chosen someone to speak on their behalf which is also quite unfortunate coming from a group that the current constitution does not fully recognise as equal citizens.

The reasons sighted for the low figures have been poor information dissemination and  intimidation in some areas. Poor translation of talking points has also been pointed out as a factor that has caused many people to miss out on contributing effectively because they have failed to articulate the real issues properly.

Find below the full list of figures released by COPAC.

Province Number of meetings Number of participants Number of males Number of females Number of youths Number of special needs
Mashonaland East &Harare 174 44 233 16 675 17 676 9 574 308
Mashonaland West 200 46 094 20 146 16 869 8 999 80
Manicaland 233 48 012 19 753 21 904 6 178 177
Matabeleland South& Bulawayo 162 16 814 7 201 7 113 2 471 29
Mashonaland Central 213 49 605 18 939 19 972 10 517 177
Matabeleland North 133 19 924 7 530 8 270 4 019 105
Masvingo 208 39 041 12 966 17 930 8 019 126
Midlands 237 25 228 11 270 10 604 31 79 175
Total 1560 288 951 114 480 120 338 52 956 1 177
Total %   100% 39.70% 41.65% 18.33% 0.41%

UN CALLS ON YOUNG PEOPLE TO TAKE PART IN NEW CONSTITUTION MAKING PROCESS – Meanwhile the United Nations  through the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef) has called on youths to participate fully in the new constitution making process. The bodies noted that Zimbabwe’s population was relatively young with over 62 percent below 24 years, according to the inter-censal demographic survey of 2008.
In a statement to commemorate the International Youth Day, which fell last Thursday, the UN urged Zimbabwean youths to actively participate in the constitution-making process.
“As the Zimbabwe Youth Policy Review and the constitution-making process continue in Zimbabwe, we encourage the young people to be actively involved in the dialogue process of contributing to the development of these policy and legal instruments which will shape their lives. Through the constitution-making process, we hope that the voices, concerns and issues raised by children and young people are well represented in the official document.
“As UNFPA and Unicef we are working with the inclusive Government of Zimbabwe in promoting the rights and development of young people; their meaningful participation and leadership.” 

NYDT Launches HIV/AIDS Alternative Solutions Project in Mat South – NYDT will soon be launching an HIV/AIDS Alternative solutions in the Matebeleland South border towns of Beitbridge and Plumtree where HIV/AIDS is said to be rife. Statistics from the Matabeleland AIDS Council show that while the Zimbabwean prevalence rate average has dropped by more than 10% in the last ten years from over 26% to 13,6% this year, the Matabeleland regional average is still higher than the national at 18%. Officials from MAC warn that the rate of infection continues to rise amongst young people mainly in the border towns of Matabeleland and this is worrying.

The HIV/AIDS alternative Solutions project seeks to engage young people in Beitbridge and Plumtree on home grown and culturally friendly solutions to the HIV/AIDS challenges in their areas. It has been noted that the pandemic’s effects are dynamic and different in each culture and community. NYDT therefore seeks to work with young people in some of the most affected areas to come up with alternative solutions to the pandemic which some are now taking lightly due to what has been termed “Information overload or HIV/AIDS fatigue” 

Meanwhile some Youths have established an organisation to assist them and their peers on HIV/AIDS issues –  The president of the organisation Mr Frera Washington  is quoted in the Chronicle as having said the “Free Stigma Africa Teenager Aids Trust is a new organisation targeting the youth in the fight against HIV and Aids after a realisation that most organisations are mainly targeting  adults while the youths are left behind or mainstreamed.
“We will focus on teenagers living in the mining areas around Zimbabwe because these are the areas that are mostly affected by HIV and Aids, yet they do not receive enough information to keep them on the safe side,” said Washington.

National Youth Games Officially Opened – The eighth edition of the Zimbabwe National Youth Games was officially launched on Sunday in Harare with all participating provinces displaying their team colours and sounding their war cries.
Delegates drawn from the Ministry of Education, Sport Arts, and Culture, the Sport and Recreation Commission, Zimbabwe Olympic Committee and the City of Harare — represented by Mayor Muchadei Masunda — graced the occasion. This also marked the beginning of the games that will see more than 3 000 athletes battling it out in eight sporting disciplines which are athletics, basketball, boxing, handball, netball, football, tennis and volleyball.

In his opening remarks, Vice President John Nkomo lamented the legion of traditional challenges, which continue to dog the development of sport, among them, lack of adequate infrastructure and a coherent administrative institutional framework, as well as insufficient financial and material resources.

He however acknowledges that sport is a powerful catalyst for change and transformation in any nation and sighted the hosting of the Fifa World Cup this year by neighbouring South Africa as a demonstration that with proper planning, commitment and dedication and the right synergies, sport can go a long way in facilitating a holistic approach to development.



One response to this post.

  1. l glad to read about my organization Freestigma Africa, keep it up guys lets promote each other so as to achieve our different goals.

    thanks once more, on saturday 18 December we will be having a fund raising show in Zvishavane(10am till Sunday)

    lots of regards

    Frera Washington


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