In Summary

  • A new survey indicates that at least one in every three Kenyan youth wishes to go abroad to find a better job, escape poverty or get an education.

Some of the most heart-rending images of youth desperation in Africa are those of the dead asylum seekers in Mediterranean shipwrecks.

Also horrifying are videos of immigrants held in dehumanising conditions, especially in Libya, as they attempt to cross over to Europe.

Some have been battered and killed in attacks reminiscent of the Slave Trade atrocities.

Majority of the victims are from west Africa, where hordes of unemployed youth can only see hope overseas. Many have perished at sea, and yet the racket continues.

Last year, nearly 2,200 people lost their lives trying to cross the Mediterranean. Some 4,200 immigrants crossed to Europe in the first 16 days of this year but, obviously, found no paradise.

For those who remain in Europe, life will not be much easier than at home.

BETTER LIFE

But East, Central and Southern Africa are also grappling with the problem of young restless people, who believe that their destiny lies beyond their borders.

Kenyan, Ugandan and Tanzanian authorities often intercept trucks clandestinely shipping youth in transit to South Africa and beyond.

A new survey indicates that at least one in every three Kenyan youth wishes to go abroad to find a better job, escape poverty or get an education.

The study, also conducted in 33 other African countries by Pan-African research network AfroBarometer, reveals that 35 per cent of Kenyan youth have considered going abroad.

But it, interestingly, found that the most popular destinations among potential migrants is neither Europe nor North America, but another African country.

That means the countries doing better economically will attract youth from their poorer neighbours.

The solution to the desire to emigrate is to create opportunities locally for youth. It is a common problem that calls for greater regional co-operation to boost development.

Source Daily Nation

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