OUR YOUTH TAKE A STAND FOR DEMOCRACY
Zimam chapters experience democracy by voting for representation in the Youth Council
The last Palestinian general elections took place nearly 13 years ago, in 2006. This means that Palestinians born after 1988 have never had the chance to vote in general or presidential elections. Those under 30 are yet to be given a voice in how their society is governed.
“How does a nation so young not have equally young representation in the legislative council? It's a shame that young people are not part of the decision-making process and don't experience democracy like the rest of the world” - Qais, Nablus
Like Qais, many young Palestinians are anxious to experience democracy through general elections in Palestine.
Since Hamas takeover of the Gaza strip in 2006, both major political parties in Palestine declared one another illegitimate. And while the siege on Gaza continues, Hamas formed a second government in Gaza without elections, while the Palestinian Authority government in the West Bank postponed elections several times because of the lack of representation by Palestinian political parties who refuse to support any elections without unity between Gaza and West Bank.
Zimam worked with the activists in February to ensure that our chapters experience democracy first hand by electing representatives from every city in the West Bank and Gaza to form our first Youth Council. The Youth Council will play an important role in forging Zimam’s messaging for 2019 and promoting our campaign to support general elections in Palestine.
“I can’t express how excited I am for representing Jenin’s chapter", said Zamboka. “I believe that our people need to feel excited and included in the decision making process. We are being marginalized by our politicians while the status quo maintains apathy and hopelessness among the public.”- Zamboka, Jenin
Zimam's campaigns in 2019 will focus on building a strong movement that will support our vision for a democratic, liberal and independent Palestine. The Youth Council will help build future strategies. The elections process across our chapters is a great introduction to the campaign to call for general elections in Palestine. It was a small taste of democracy, and our activists are thirsty for more.