Nobel for Malala?-A A +A
Saturday, October 12, 2013
I CAME across news in last week’s Sun. Star Cebu issues about the announcement to be made in Oslo and Stockholm of the Nobel Prize winners in the international recognition of people who are most reputable in their contribution to the development of the universe and influential in changes for better living.
Through the awarding body organized in the late 1800s by Swedish inventor Alfred Nobel, the world through the Nobel Prize celebrates people best in physics, physiology or medicine, literature, chemistry and peace.
What has called the world's attention in these past few days is the story of a young Pakistani woman who could win the Nobel Peace Prize this year as nominee for having spoken for women and their right to education.
The 16-year-old Malala Yousafzai has called the attention of leaders in the world since the fundamentalist Taliban closed and bombed schools in Swat Valley, including Malala's school in Mingora---and condemned women activists, beheading them. There have been short documentaries in media of the stories of the experiences of Malala and her friends for the world to know.
As a student in Swat Valley, she loved calculus and chemistry. Now in a school in UK where she lives with her family, she wants to be a doctor.
Up to the time of writing this, I still don’t know who is declared winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. If it’s Malala, it would be an intriguing story of a valley girl in Pakistan shot by the Taliban last year as she was on her way home from a place where no girls nor women were allowed to be—in school. Shot in the head, neck and shoulder, she was rushed to the hospital and out of the country into UK where she was operated on and survived.
But the Swat Valley was her home, although now just in memory, a beautiful place to be among the freshness of tall mountains and clear rivers where she had gone to school for ten years before the Taliban came into their life. At 12, she spoke for women’s freedom in education, especially through media, and she is now in world news.
Malala’s education-activist father, Zauddin Yousafzai, once set up a school for all —girls and boys and continues to stimulate her passion to keep moving.
Up to this time of writing this, I now know the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, an international body called Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapoons, or OPCW.
It’s not Malala.
But her story stays. It would still be of an interesting story of a valley girl in Pakistan shot by the Taliban last year as she was on her way home from a place where no girls nor women were allowed to be—in school.
She is a fighter in her own way for women’s rights, especially the right to education, something that the Taliban don’t like because they see education is only for boys.
Last year when the young Taliban shot Malala, she was told later by the children who were there with her caught in the incident that the shooter’s hands were shaking. He looked like he was only 20 years old. The poor boy is brainwashed, Malala calmly told the journalist as though she were a grown woman at 16, sure of herself, a Pakistani speaking to the world in good English over television.
Her memoir would be a good read, her story written with the help of British journalist Christina Lamb, entitled “I Am Malala.” In the book, the young fighter also talks about her parents who were right behind her when the threat on her life was in the air. From them she got inspiration to be brave and strong in her mission.
The parents got married “out of love,” she told the journalist in a whisper during an interview, a marriage which is a no, no to the Taliban because marriages are arranged, and never out of love.
She will still be there to continue to give hope on education for children around the world. It's still always invigorating for us to know a story like Malala's.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 13, 2013.