The presidential advisor on youth matters and enterprise development, Daisry Mathias, says she would respond at a later stage to recent allegations by children of the liberation struggle that she is not visible and taking up their cause.
Her response, she says, would be to clarify what her role as the presidential advisor on youth matters is. The Namibian Exile Kids Association (NEKA), which represents the children of the liberation struggle, voiced concerns this week at the absence of Mathias’ voice on issues of youth. “We would like to think that at this point in time she should have created some rigorous mechanism that would have transformed the current operations of the Ministry of Sport, Youth and National Service. In fact, we should have developed and proposed a youth agenda with the inclusion of all youth organisations in this country. But no,” said NEKA chairperson Benita Nakaambo. NEKA says that the appointment of Mathias as the first ever presidential youth advisor excited many Namibian youth who all thought they had moved a step closer to the presidency through President Hage Geingob’s advisor on youth matters.
“The only time you get to see her speak on youth matters is when she is invited to an event or at a government-organised event. I don’t think she goes out of her way to solve or help youth issues and by the look of things she does not understand the youth, or at least pretend to,” NEKA charged. Approached for comment, Mathias declined to comment on NEKA’s allegations. “I decline to issue a response to these assertions made by NEKA. At an appropriate time I endeavour to expound on the function and activities of the presidential youth advisor,” Mathias said.
Mathias’s role includes facilitating dialogue and identifying solutions to the socio-economic challenges facing the Namibian youth.