Hlokomelo Mabogale |
South Africa was rocked by a deadly, dirtier, and heartless regime called apartheid it oppressed Black people. Currently South Africa is divided into nine (9) provinces. To pick one, Limpopo province which was given a name Northern Transvaal by that devil’s friend, apartheid.
In 1995, just after first democratic general election in 1994, Northern Transvaal was scrabbed and as a result, Limpopo was born. Limpopo province is named after the second biggest river in Africa, Limpopo River. In Sepedi language Limpopo means “Diphororo tsa meetse” (Strong gushing waterfalls).
Limpopo is made of rural villages and capital city is Polokwane which means “Place of safety.” Speaking of rural, the province is made up of five districts namely Mopani, Vhembe, Waterberg, Sekhukhune and Capricorn. In those districts, specifically Mopani and Vhembe, young people are having it hard. Why is that so? One can wonder. As much as answers might differ from one person to another, common answer can be that rural villages are found in those districts.
Lack of access to information is a huge challenge in the rural areas. To get to a library, one has to travel, using money that is not even available. I remember few weeks ago I had a conversation with a 17-year-old girl from Mamaila Kolobetona in Sekgosese area about why don’t we have public libraries in every village.
She simply said “Maybe as we are from this rural village (Mamailla Kolobetona), we don’t deserve to have one, maybe we should also blame apartheid like our current leaders.” She didn’t stop there; she continued “Right now, I can’t even switch on and off a computer.”
Speaking of switching on and off a computer, I had an embarrassing first five months of my first year at higher institution. I didn’t know how to fully use a computer.
Instead of getting straight to the course in higher education, in some cases, students from rural areas first have to learn how to switch on and off a computer, learn how libraries work .
Our education system in rural areas is bad. It is so bad that in Mamaila Kolobetona, where I come from, there are two high schools and four primary schools. In those 6 schools, no school has a library, no school has a laboratory, no school has a computer lab, so obviously no school has a internet connectivity.
How do we expect to have youth that is well equipped to face higher education system? Education in the rural areas is in a bad shape. Something needs to be done. There shouldn’t be a difference between a learner from rural and urban areas
In conclusion, as the people falling under the category, the forgotten one in the rural areas, we should cherish the little that we have and not burn our schools, libraries (which are not available). To our leaders, priotise education and take it to the rural areas with full force. These days, Internet is life.