SELF-INITIATIVE

Youths should unlock their potential to create jobs

If the youth don’t work and save during their early days, their future will be condemned to poverty

In Summary

• Covid-19 pandemic has worsened the unemployment situation, as many companies have reduced the human resources, while others have shut down all together.

• A recent research report indicates that 23.7 per cent of Kenyans are living in extreme poverty.

Analysts polled by Reuters expected the unemployment rate to edge up to 25.3 per cent in the first quarter
UNEMPLOYMENT Analysts polled by Reuters expected the unemployment rate to edge up to 25.3 per cent in the first quarter
Image: REUTERS

Unemployment continues to be one of the major problems in our country, even as more students leave Form 4 or graduate from higher institutions of learning.

Covid-19 pandemic has worsened the situation, as many companies have reduced the human resources, while others have shut down all together.

A recent research report indicates that 23.7 per cent of Kenyans are living in extreme poverty.

The level of unemployment risks making these youths poor forever because if they don’t work and save during their early days, their future will be condemned to poverty.

Efforts by youths to get involved in small enterprise jobs to at least cater for some of their needs is good and beneficial, not only to themselves but to society as well. Social evils such as crime, drug abuse and prostitutions have been blamed on lack of jobs. So when these youths get engaged in economic activities, the society becomes better and safer.

Graduates from institutions of higher learning should also emulate this to create means of generating income to pay rent and upkeep. They should put aside their pride and ego that comes with degrees and get their hands dirty, even as they wait for white-collar jobs.

The danger is if they chose to stay idle, they fall under the risk of becoming victims of drug abuse, due to peer pressure, engaging in prostitution and toxic relationships in a bid to finance their upkeep. Getting involved in small contract jobs will help reduce such cases.

The government should also take an initiative to ensure systems are work to arrest fake jobs syndicates and create a conducive environment where individuals’ income generating activities can thrive. Providing loans at affordable interest rates to youths will enable them start small business enterprises. The Kenya Revenue Authority should also ensure that the taxation regime is favourable to young business persons to encourage more investments hence creation of jobs.

Supporting technical skills is also key towards our industrial revolution. Our young people have all it takes to put this nation in a completely different developmental orbit. Chinese are taking up construction work at the expense of our people, while our government is spending billions to pay them. This money should be going into the pockets of our own engineers and contractors.

Aloys Michael is a communications and media technology student at Maseno University