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Friday, 5 April 2013 09:54


ORANJESTAD — Rudy Lampe (RED) stated that his party wants youngsters to vote at the age of sixteen. According to him, youngsters also have a right to decide. He thinks it’s important that Aruba prepares for international developments, also with regard to the use of cannabis and gay rights.By Franciska Groen



With this Lampe responds to the discussion following a lecture by Hellen van der Wal on which the Amigoe reported earlier. The politician believes youngsters have the right to speak, to be heard and to cast their ballot. However, he thinks they’ll be capable of this as from the age of sixteen rather than twelve.

According to Lampe youngsters are informed earlier because they follow and use all technological developments. “The youth is better informed due to the technical revolution.” He refers to the various debates held by youngsters, for instance at the Youth Parliament and at the secondary schools Colegio Arubano, EPB, the mavo and EPI. “It’s impressive how the youngsters debate. They well informed, use the right arguments and debate better than our own parliament as regards contents.”


A different caliber

Lampe is therefore surprised by the reactions from adults. “It’s important to realize that the present-day youth and that of the past are not of the same caliber.” Youngsters will become more involved with the community if we lower the voting age, according to him. “Youngsters will start thinking about their choices, about the consequences of such for the community.  It means imparting more responsibility; a forming aspect.” This also means parents are to communicate more with their children, the leader of the extra parliamentary party emphasized. With this he endorses the viewpoint of criminologist Van der Wal, who indicated that the poor performances at school and psycho-social problems are partly due to a lack of communicative skills and consequently find it difficult to express themselves.


International developments

He stated that lowering the voting age was discussed during a referendum on Bonaire several years ago. “A bare majority had voted in favor of lowering the voting age. However, nothing changed because Bonaire became a BES-island.” According to Lampe, there is an international movement nowadays to give youngsters the right to vote, but also on other areas, for example cannabis and gay rights. “We cannot stop this movement and must prepare ourselves considering the many American tourists in our country and our relation with the Netherlands.”

Lampe and his party will join the elections in September this year.