By Esther Manduwa

2020 will go down in history as a memorable year for the country’s youths in terms of participation in politics.

This is according to the Young Politicians Union of Malawi’s assessment of role young people have played in politics the year drawing to a close. 

The National Coordinator of the Union, Clement Makuwa said, “Resilience shown by youths in providing oxygen to protests that emanated from the disputed Presidential election of 2019 is no mean achievement.”

Such recognition was also noted on the campaign trail for the court sanctioned Presidential poll in June, according to Makuwa. 

He paid tribute to young people for being the driving force behind safeguarding Malawi’s democracy. 

However, according to Makuwa, the deadly Covid-19 pandemic derailed the momentum youths had taken in politics. 

“The pandemic affected the gains made by stalling several programs targeting the youths,” Makuwa complained.

Though social media provided new means of mobilization, Makuwa said that the outbreak restricted youths from gathering to come up with solid ideas for youth empowerment in politics. 

Makuwa said, ”Apart from the vicious cycle of exploiting young people to perpetrate violence, the minus from 2020 is the Executive arm of government’s failure to appoint youths in parastatal boards, thereby cutting out youth representation.”

Moving forward, Makuwa has challenged youths to strengthen capacity in politics to be a force to reckon with. 

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