Lwazi Mthethwa – Advent Hope Christian School

One day children will shout: “Covid-19 is over!”

But gender based violence will still need urgent addressing, writes 13-year-old Grade 7 learner,  Lwazi Mthethwa, from Advent Hope Christian School in Hluhluwe.

On 23 of March 2020 the President of South Africa introduced a lockdown because of coronavirus. It was bad because some people lost their jobs. They didn’t have money to buy food. We were not even allowed to play outside. We were forced to stay inside not outside. People could not even do menial jobs as gardeners or house-cleaners. And we had to stay five feet away from people – even our kinsmen. We couldn’t kiss each other. We couldn’t even hug. Strange new ways of life!

Lockdown had changed people’s lives, but one day it will be over and people’s life styles will change.  People will stop wearing face masks. Our uncles will go back to their drinking ways. Alcohol again! Schools will reopen and this time a new dispensation will rule. Cleanliness will be the order of every school. Keeping a record of every learner’s healthy status will be there.

The best thing will be visiting and sharing things friends. Yes, during lock downm sharing was prohibited, but after it, we shall share our things. Sharing is love!

At school, children will shout, “Covid-19 is over!” They will shout at break time and during sports days. Some like me will miss covid-19 because it made everyone clean. Each time one visits the toilet, one has to wash hands with soap – a basic hygiene principle.

I hate wearing a mask because it makes breathing difficult. Sometimes I had to return home just to go and fetch it.  And I will never forget the one day when I was screened. My temperature was too high, and everybody said I should stand aside because I had a symptom of Covid-19. I cursed covid-19. Some learners laughed at me, and then avoided me.

People are hopeful that one day this pandemic will be over. After it is over, they will be able to touch everything they want without fear and without having to sanitize everything before you tocuh it.

When the lockdown is over and Covid19 is no more, I expect to hear about no more gender based violence. Women will celebrate that time.

Government must fight gender based violence as hard as it has fought Covid-19. The two are the same. They both cause fear and anxiety. Both are killers.

I wish all countries come together and make same rules such as those of Covid-19 for everyone. Let every person respect the other person. Let the police and soldiers work jointly to stop gender based violence.

  • This is a slightly edited version of Lwazi Mthethwa’s entry to Roving Reporters journalism themed writing competition, Life After Lockdown – The Future We Want

For adjudicators’ reference: Entrant 24_Lwazi Mthethwa



After the Covid-19 pandemic, will everything return to how it was before – or will we change how we live in the future? Will we realise the need to make this world a better place, both for people and for nature?

These are the key questions in Roving Reporters’ journalism-themed writing competition, Life After Covid-19 – The Future We Want, catering the school learners from Grade 7 upwards across the country.

The competition forms part of a broader reporting project supported by Super Save and Media Development and Diversity Agency.

“We are encouraging high school children to document their experiences of the pandemic and reflect on how they would like to see the world change for the better,” said Roving Reporters director Fred Kockott. “Reflection is a first step to change, and this project gives learners a voice and an opportunity to have some agency in how their future unfolds.”

We plan to run the competition through to the end of the school year, with a top entry published every fortnight.

Schools that wish to submit entries should click here to access the entry forms and writing guide to share with learners who wish to take part.

For further information contact Fred Kockott on 083 277 8907 or email fredk@rovingreporters.co.za

Now read: Poet’s take on life after Covid-19: “We fell asleep in one world and woke in another”