By Sanae Elgourari
By Sanae Elgourari
Fez – The Soleil of Fez Association and JCI Fez celebrated the International Day of the African child at Dar Batha, Fez on Saturday, June 23.
The International Day of the African Child has been celebrated on June 16 every year since 1991, when it was first initiated by the Organization of African Unity. The day is intended to honor those who participated in the Soweto (South Africa) uprising in 1976 which took place on that date. The International Day of the African Child also serves to raise awareness of the continuing need for improvement in the education that is provided to African children.
In Soweto, on June 16, 1976, about ten thousand black school children marched in a column more than half a mile long to protest the poor quality of their education and demanding their right to be taught in their own language. Hundreds of young students were shot. More than a hundred people were killed in the protests over the course of the following two weeks and more than a thousand were injured.
Soleil of Fez Association and JCI Fez celebrated the day with an evening of poetry in which many Moroccans as well as foreigners from different African countries participated by reading their own poems and singing songs dedicated to all African children. The event also showcased their sympathy for the loss of life in a video prepared by JCI Fez.
Boris Konzi, a presenter and poet at the event, made a statement to dedicate the evening’s activities.
“This evening is dedicated to all African children who suffer from all kind of violence, exploitation, poverty, discrimination, homelessness…etc. They are all future leaders of Africa and we should at least pay tribute to them in a way or another,” Mr. Konzi said.
“I have organized this day for seven years now and this is my first time here in Morocco. On the behalf of myself and my friends, I thank both the JCI Fez and Soliel of Fez Association for their appreciated efforts to succeed the day,”Mr. Konzi added.
Normally, the International Day of the African Child is observed on June 16th. This year the organizers postponed the celebration of the day because of the Sacred Music Festival. In the end, the organizers have succeeded in making the day one of awareness and this was clear by the large number of people in the audience.