With conciliatory messages chalked on blackboards, Langa students assemble peaceably in 1976 in an attempt to persuade police to release detained comrades. Picture: Independent Media Archives

For Youth Day we asked first-year journalism students from the Cape Peninsula University of Technology to write for us.

Here's what Ryan de Villiers had to say:

Forty-three years ago, the youth of South Africa had to deal with oppression, discrimination, overwhelming  violence, poverty and abuse. The youth fought back against the apartheid regime and helped usher  in a new united nation. It's 2019 and the world has changed so much since the days of apartheid. The  youth of South Africa face completely different challenges and problems.

The youth might not be oppressed because of the colour of their skin but we still face our own set of  problems. we might not be fighting against a racist government, but we are fighting against  organisations that want to destroy our planet. We don’t have to drop out of school at the age of 13
to get a job to provide for our families but that doesn’t mean that a lot of the youth of today can  finish school. 

When walking around 43 years ago the youth had to worry about the police but  nowadays little girls get kidnapped or raped. Drugs and poverty rule the streets and it's so easy for  the youth to get caught in the trap. The youth can’t afford houses or decent healthcare. 

Every day  the youth must face the consequences of the older generation's  actions.

The youth of today face so many problems that range from abuse to gangsterism to rape and murder.

We might not be facing an apartheid government, but we are facing obstacles and problems that rival  what the youth of 43 years ago went through.

* Speak up like the youth of ‘76 by tweeting your opinions and challenges to the new @GovernmentZA's Minister of Women, Youth and Persons with  Disabilities: Minister Maite Emily Nkoana-Mashabane using #speakup76 @IOL or write to IOL at [email protected]