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Oshigambo learners scoop debate top honours

2024-03-27  Festus Hamalwa

Oshigambo learners scoop debate top honours

OSHAKATI - Oshigambo High School emerged triumphant in the highly contested Oshana Regional Library Debate Championship 2024 held in Oshakati last Saturday.  The school’s impressive performance earned them a slew of prestigious awards such as gold medals, certificates, and N$1 800 cash prize.

Amidst fierce competition from other participating schools, Oshigambo High School distinguished itself with its exceptional debating skills and eloquence. The team’s insightful arguments and persuasive rhetoric impressed the panel of judges, ultimately securing their victory in the championship.

The debate competition was held under the theme, ‘Promoting civic and voter education through public discourse, and meaningful youth participation in democratic processes’. 

Uukule Secondary School (SS) grabbed second place, while Gabriel Taapopi SS took third place.

Uukule SS earned a trophy, silver medals, certificates and N$1 600 cash prize, as well as one box of printing papers sponsored by Waltons Oshakati.

Gabriel Taapopi SS was also awarded a trophy, bronze medals, certificates, one box of printing papers and N$1 400 cash prize. Fillemon Mwapopi from Onawa SS was the best male speaker and Rachel Kalipi from Nuuyoma SS was the best female speaker.

Ndayola Mulongeni from Gabriel Taapopi SS was the overall best speaker.

Close to 29 schools participated including seven schools from the Omusati region, five schools from the Ohangwena region and five from the Oshikoto region; each represented by four learners and one teacher.

Speaking to Youth Corner, Jakob Muleka, chief librarian in the Oshana region, said the debating competition assists learners to develop intellectually, improve communication skills, enhance critical thinking skills, research skills, personal growth, etc. through positive debate.

He added that debate requires learners to evaluate evidence, construct logical arguments, and respond to opposing viewpoints.

“Strengthening communication skills means the debate provides an opportunity for learners to practice public speaking, active listening, and persuasive communication. It also builds confidence through debate, learners can gain confidence in their ability to speak up, share their ideas, and defend their positions,” said Muleka.

In addition, Muleka stated that debates foster a sense of community where learners are enabled to work together as a team and build relationships with their peers. 

“The event was a huge success. It was so wonderful to see the learners interacting with each other and building connections. We were able to achieve our goals and provide valuable information to those who attended. Overall, it was a fruitful and informative experience for all involved. We couldn’t be happier with the outcome as the number of participating schools has increased ever since the championship started in 2015,” he further emphasised.

 He mentioned that based on the theme of the 2024 championship, learners should carry the lessons learned and the friendships forged.

“They should remain steadfast in our commitment to promoting civic and voter education, ensuring that every voice is heard and every vote counts. They should continue to strive for a society where democracy thrives and where the aspirations of our youth are realised,” he urged.

  In addition, Muleka said learners should remember that the journey towards a more vibrant and inclusive democracy is ongoing. 

“It is our collective responsibility to nurture it, protect it, and pass it on to future generations. They, in collaboration with teachers and other stakeholders such as Oshana Regional Library, should continue to champion the power of debate as a tool for personal growth, social change, and community engagement,” he said.


2024-03-27  Festus Hamalwa

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