ASSIGNMENT 2: Discuss in 250 words why it is important for every Namibian to vote, with reference to Citizenship, Rights and Responsibility.
Voting is not compulsory in Namibia, as it is for example in Australia where people are obliged to do so by law; and yet it remains important that those eligible to vote continue to be involved stakeholders in the way Namibia is governed and by whom. The Constitution of Namibia states that anyone of the age 18 and over, with a Namibian ID is eligible to vote. Whatever issues motivate voters to go to the polls, it is important that they are aware of the choices they have; what the various parties have to offer; and then make informed decisions before they register their ballot. The composition of a government is determined, not only by those who vote for the party which runs it, but also by those who stay away and in so doing, often influence the vote in favor of the status quo. On the question of voting, it is absolutely crucial that all eligible voters, regardless of the parties they support and/or the issues they are concerned about, should ensure that their votes are counted. According to Erasmus, G. (2000), participation in elections is the most common way to take part in the democratic processes. At the same time she says that voting can also be a consequence of the expectations within the society about participation in elections. Even in the narrowest view of democracy, voting is the way to participate.
Erasmus, G. (2000). ‘The Constitution: It’s Impact on Namibian Statehold and Politics’. Gamsberg Macmillan Publishers, Windhoek.
The Constitution of the Republic of Namibia. Retrieved form: http://www.gov.na/documents/10180/30001/Namibia_Constitution.pdf