SAO PAULO – Nobel Peace Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai said on Monday in Sao Paulo that voting is the most powerful weapon for change and improve the country and suggested that girls’ education should be a priority for every presidential candidate in forthcoming elections.
In a debate on education and the empowerment of women held in Sao Paulo, the young winner of the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize stressed that voting is power and it is now in the hands of every Brazilian, so they should use this power to choose the one that will best represent them.
In front of Brazilian activists and educators, Malala, 20, said that girls’ education in the long term is the most worthwhile investment and should be the top priority in the campaigns of those who vie for the presidency of Brazil in the elections in October.
“Education is more than just about learning and reading. It was about emancipation. It was about empowerment of women,” Malala told some 800 members of the audience in the Ibirapuera Park Auditorium.
Malala also announced that she will launch her personal project very soon in Brazil to promote girls’ education, although she did not offer details about the initiative.
According to the activist, it is estimated that some 1.5 million women in the South American country have been denied this basic right.
Malala, one of the most well-known and influential figures for her fight for women’s rights, was shot by the Taliban at age 15 for her campaign for and defense of girls’ right to go to school.