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Why is June 16th important to me?

By Rofhiwa Machebe, 19, Gauteng 

Youth Day commemorates the Soweto Uprising which took place on 16th June 1976 where thousands of black students were protesting against having to learn in Afrikaans during the Apartheid regime. It is important to me because it marks a day that changed the lives of South African youth forever because youth now have access to education that is taught in a medium of instruction that students can understand. While the quality of this education can be debated, I celebrated having the access.

June 16th is important because it is a way to pay tribute to the students who were apart of the protests,  many which were brutally murdered by the Afrikaans police. The day brings awareness to the younger generation on how the youth of 1976 played a pivotal role in the liberation of South Africa during the apartheid regime and how we should appreciate the privileges that some of us currently have, such as being able to have access to quality education, tertiary education and equal opportunities.

Youth Day is important because it marked a new dawn for South African education policies as well as serving as a reminder of the progress our country has made regarding equality and equal opportunity for all youth. It embodies how strong the voices of the youth are and the impact they have on the country once they unite.

A Luta Continua! 

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