By Titus Omune
In Kenya today, there is a high rise in youth unemployment.
If you take a walk in Nairobi CBD for instance, especially along Agha Khan walk, you will find many tired youths carrying envelopes looking for jobs.
Most of them look hopeless. This forced me to do some research on why youth unemployment is on the rise.
Here are some reasons I considered;
1. Lack of required skills
Most of our graduates today are equipped with knowledge but lack required job skills.
This is because of “quantity” education we receive in our universities and colleges rather than quality education.
Our learning institutions are flooded hence lecturers find it extremely difficult to engage learners in practical sessions thus focusing on giving them theory lessons which only give learners knowledge and not skills required in the job market.
This makes our youths “half-baked graduates”.
This has become a national disaster in our country ranging from senior government officials to a common mwananchi.
It is the major cause of unemployment in Kenya since many youths are asked to part with a particular amount of money to gain favour from the employer.
This, therefore, leaves many graduates vulnerable since they are unable to raise the required amount of money.
I am happy our President H.E. Uhuru Kenyatta is leading in the war against this vice.
3. Tribalism and Nepotism
In many offices you visit today in Kenya, you are likely to find people speaking a similar language or are related in one way or the other.
This has made it very difficult for young graduates from humble backgrounds to enter the job market.
As the former Prime Minister Raila Odinga once said, your name might be a blessing or a curse when you are looking for a job.
As a country, we should work on giving youths equal opportunities without considering their backgrounds.
4.Strict job requirements
Many employers give strict requirements to be met before being considered for the job.
These requirements include Certificate of good conduct, HELB clearance certificate, CRB clearance and many years of experience.
Getting these clearance certificates require a lot of money which our youths are unable to raise.
This locks many graduates out.
I, therefore, appeal to our government to intervene and ensure these requirements are reduced, or at least allow youths to acquire them after gaining employment.