Government Officers have been asked to work closely with the youth at the grassroots level, in order to engage them into participating in national development.
The Cabinet Secretary (CS) for Information, Communications and Technology, Innovations and Youth Affairs, Joe Mucheru said by involving the youth in the formulation of government policies and programmes the youth will feel part of decision making.
“We want the youth to participate in matters affecting them and it is important that they are engaged in all matters affecting them,” he said.
The CS was speaking on Monday, during an interactive session with officers from his Ministry held at the Kenya School of Government, Kabete. The officers included all Youth Officers from the State Department of Youth Affairs and Information Officers from State Department of Information from all the 47 Counties.
Mucheru said it is crucial for civil servants to interact and bond as they share successes and challenges during their service delivery.
“Sharing experiences at work provides an environment for right mentorship and mainstreaming in the government,” he said.
Mucheru expressed concerns over the age gap between the current top management and junior civil servants serving, noting that majority of civil servants were above age 36, thus posing a challenge of succession and continuity after the elderly leave service.
The CS commended President Uhuru Kenyatta for his love for the country’s youth, noting that in most government appointments the president ensures that the youth are represented.
He said a Bill will be tabled in Parliament that would ensure that the National Youth Council is transformed with new structures that will see full participation of the Youth in National Development.
The CS at the same time, emphasized on the need to fully engage the youth on national matters affecting them, and to protect them from negative practices such as radicalization, drug and alcohol abuse and female genital mutilation.
Mucheru said “Youth need to be equipped with right skills, be empowered economically, ensure right policies, infrastructure and programmes are put in place, as well as boost mentorship for them to contribute to national development in a conducive environment” he added.
On coronavirus disease, the CS advised Kenyans not to be destructed by alarming statements that have no basis but are only spread to misinform and create panic among the public.
However, the CS said Corona Virus is real and asked Kenyans to be on the lookout and keep abreast about the virus to enable them make right decisions.
Mucheru assured that the government is working around the clock in collaboration with the World Health Organization and other partners in health matters so as to be ready for any eventuality in case there is a breakout.
“There is not coronavirus detected in the county, ignore reports circulating that six people have been reported to have tested positive,” he stressed.
On the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), the CS asked Kenyans to ignore rumors that the document was meant to establish more positions for political leadership, clarifying that it is meant to cement cordial co-existence amongst Kenyans and to eradicate the common scenario witnessed every time the general elections is done.
“Don’t’ be cheated, no one is looking for positions through the BBI but it is a document that will bring Kenyans together. Before you make your decisions, find the truth about it,” said the CS.
Mucheru said through the BBI, Kenyans would be able to have a shared belief, ideals and aspirations that will lead to a common national ethos.
In her remarks the Principal Secretary for Broadcasting and Telecommunications, Esther Koimett expressed appreciation to Information field officers for their role in articulating government policies and development programmes.
She said the officers can be better placed in informing the public on the true path the government was taking on development programmes that touches on their livelihood.
The Principal Secretary for Information, Communications and Technology, Jerome Ochieng said it is important for all government departments to work closely together in harmony, noting that every sector of the government are interrelated in service delivery.
He urged the youth to fully utilize the Constituency Innovation Hubs established by the government in the constituencies.
“The centres would provide the youth with a digital platform in which they can access internet service as well as opportunity to explore online jobs,” said Jerome.
Jerome assured that the government will continue to provide an enabling environment for the private sector to contribute towards laying infrastructure that will provide digital technology, application and innovation to thrive.
The Principal Secretary for Youth, Julius Korir said the youth play an important role in the society and if accorded an opportunity particularly in empowering them economically through tapping of their talents and potential in the business sector.
“If the youth were economically empowered through harnessing their talents, particularly their potential in the business sector, more jobs will be created,” he said.
The function was also attended by the Government Spokesperson, Col. (Rtd) Cyrus Oguna, the Chief Administrative Secretary ICT, Maureen Mbaka, the Chief Administrative Secretary Innovation and Youth, Nadia Ahmed Abdalla and Information Secretary, Judy Munyinyi among other senior government officials.
By Bernadette Khaduli