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Stop criminalizing youth, Police told

The civil society in Nakuru County has appealed to the police service to stop criminalizing the youth since they tend to be the first suspects every time crime committed, even before proper investigations are carried out.

The Head of a local non-governmental organization of Parent, Agnes Mwamburi said her long association with the youth in the County has proved that a number of them felt unfairly targeted by the security operators, sometimes without any valid reasons.

She said there was an urgent need for society to stop labelling youth, particularly unmarried men as the only potential culprits in the urban informal areas.

Speaking in Nakuru, Mwamburi said the recent upsurge in crime in some parts of the country could be attributed to escalation of poverty, poor parenting and idleness due to unemployment.

However, she commended the National Government initiative dubbed Kazi Mtaani for offering huge relief to thousands of jobless youths in the country.

The NGO official urged the government to continuously extend lifespan of the programme since it has proved to be a lifeline for a majority of the jobless youths.

Mwamburi added that time was ripe for the government to involve and listen more to the youth while formulating policies or rescue programmes, since the top-down approach has not achieved most of the intended purposes.

Another NGO Leader, Jackson Njonjo, attributed the increased suicides among the youths, especially in Molo and Kuresoi Sub-counties to widespread abject poverty and for occasionally being treated as prime suspects during incidents of crime.

By Veronica Bosibori

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