YOUTH EMPOWERMENT IS THE ONLY SOLUTION TO RISING YOUTH UNEMPLOYMENT IN LUO NYANZA
The political season is over,the lakeside counties are silent once again. Pockets of youths can be spotted discussing the performance of their leaders thus far vis à vis the problems affecting their respective counties .
One would be forgiven to think these youths never participated in the elections of their local leadership. From attacking their governors ,to the lack of jobs which they had been promised during campaigns.
This situation is replicated in all the Luo Nyanza counties. The youths have been used by the political class to fight their battles and then abandoned. They will only be remembered again six months into the next general election .
The local leadership has intentionally refused to empower the youths because they believe if and when the youths are empowered, they won't accept handouts and do the dirty job for politicians.
Migori county for example is the leading producer of sugarcane in Luo Nyanza,but neither the county government nor the MPs done enough to ensure that the youth who make up 80 percent of cane growers are empowered.
Gold mining sites are also in Migori but,the youth who engage in mining gold are the poorest.
In the neighboring HomaBay county,the governor has literally brought the county to its knee. It's noteworthy that the High Court recently nullified the HomaBay Governorship election, may be to give the people of Homa Bay the chance to correct their mistakes.
Migori County is not alone in this,across the county border is Siaya county, a county which has produced a great number of respected intellectuals but still remain at the mercy of politicians. The governor thinks that the only important thing to do is to pay homage to the Odinga and that's all,leaving the residents to suffer in poverty.
The situation has forced some few pragmatic leaders to come forward to change the tides on youth empowerment. Notable among them is Daniel Juma, founder of Dongruok Dala Initiative in Ugenya.
Daniel Juma has gone ahead to prove that its not all about political leadership,that one can effect changes in the society,but through will and inner purity of the heart to assist others.
Through his initiative, he has been able to empower youths to start a SACCO within Ugenya constituency, which has gone along way in helping the youths to be self reliant.
Indeed when he convinced the youths to mobilize their fellows through a WhatsApp group,nobody thought that idea could be the very cornerstone of youth empowerment, in fact some people dismissed the suggestion outright.
To say that the initiative has helped the Ugenya youths,would be an understatement, it has in fact changed their view of life. This is just one success story of youth empowerment.
What if more people were to come on board ? What if more leaders were to embrace these ideas? Indeed,Luo Nyanza would be above the rest in terms of development. But without leaders such as Daniel Juma , then Luo development would always be as elusive as it has always been.