I saw that I can be the change that girls should not be looking down on themselves ...

My name is Mary Namaya and I am the speaker of the youth parliament here in Malawi. My Job in parliament is to give orders as to who must give in their views at that particular time and set peace between parties. I then hand over what we have discussed in the parliament to the committee and they hand it over to the main board of the parliament.

I always dreamt of becoming speaker of parliament. And I had the courage because I didn’t want to look down on myself as most girls do. I got this from the gender roles that we are all equal.

I saw that I can be the change that girls should not be looking down on themselves saying that everything has to be done by boys. And so I want people to have the mindset that whether a boy or a girl we can do all things equally and that’s why I chose to become a speaker.

Being a speaker of parliament has really brought a difference in my life and my family. When my parents heard that I was chosen as the speaker of parliament they were so happy and proud of me because they saw that I am a visionary girl.

When in parliament we are taught by the clerks on how rule and operate the parliament. This has equipped me with skills on how I can easily approach and handle different people. Due to inferiority complex most people do not accept a girl in their community as her being a leader. I am a very good example because this happened to me when I was campaigning to become the speaker of parliament. Lucky enough some people were very supportive just because of how I associated with them.

After two years of my term as youth parliament, I want that everyone in the youth parliament to be satisfied that they really took part in the discussions that we will be having and I want to leave a mark.

I would like to encourage my fellow youths who also wish to become speaker of parliament someday. Please fight for your dream and do not look down on yourself.

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