Written by Leonard Wamalwa
Read 564 Times
Youth engaged in welding business. Some of the many in the 47 counties are set to benefit from the Sh 14 billion from the National Chamber of Commerce. [Photo | File]
The National Chamber of Commerce is rolling out a program aimed at engaging youth in the country to embrace business projects that can engage them so that they are not used by politicians in the run up to the next general elections.
Acting national chairman of the chamber Laban Rao Onditi told journalists in a workshop in Kitale that the chamber is putting in place modalities to identify the best ways of bringing the youths fully in business activities.
"We were looking at what transpired in the post-election violence and we realized that the majority of people who happened to do those things were youth because of lack of engagement in sustainable or economic values. We therefore, decided to start programs to engage them in economic activities hence will not have time to be engaged by politicians," Onditi said.
Among the activities expected to engage the youths include value addition in agriculture among other activities found in respective counties to get products that can be exported to international and regional markets such as the East African Community - EAC and COMESA markets.
The program that is expected to be done in all the 47 counties in the country shall see the country change its rules of trade and be able to regulate its imports just like any other developing and developed countries do.
Advanced technologies for processing are expected to be sourced in the long run so that the hope of producing is embraced at county levels whereby the indigenous investors can participate in pack industries.
"We want to teach youths how to do business and where specific markets are found and thus know that when you engage in business you have to protect it because politics will not add much value to their lives apart from being misused by politicians," Onditi pointed out.
The Kitale chamber of commerce CEO Martin Waliaula (R) speaks to reporters at the workshop and the national interim chairman of chamber of commerce Laban Onditi
14 billion shilling sponsorship
The chairman revealed that the chamber is anticipating receiving Kshs 14 billion from an organization of business community in Germany that shall be used in a ten year program to enhance the Kenyan youth economically.
Youth are expected to improve skills, get insurance guarantee fund to enable them borrow and be guaranteed and create an environment for every individual to feel he or she is of value in the country.
The money is expected to be released immediately after the chamber of commerce national elections that were slated for this week, but suspended indefinitely following the Sunday tragic deaths of ministers Professor George Saitoti and his assistant Orwa Ojode.
However, the chamber had earlier on been marred by irregularities in its elections at all levels caused by loopholes in the constitution which the chairman said had been amended and thus expect the elections to be free and fair to put in place credible leaders to run it.
Technical skills to the youth
On receiving the funds, the chamber is set to sponsor one village polytechnic in each county through the ministry of higher learning to develop the institution to an advanced level first class center for skills upgrading.
The centers will be dealing with management, entrepreneurship, skills and technology transfer under the management of the chamber of commerce.
At the same time Kitale branch chief executive officer of the chamber Martin Waliaula said that the chamber had received Kshs 2 million from business advocacy fund to harmonize the two local authorities including municipal and county councils to harmonize with the business community in the payment of single business permits that has been a major issue between the two parties.
The money is aimed at sensitizing the local authority officers and the business community to understand the essence of engaging dialogue to reach a consensus on how the payments of the permit can be done conveniently without wrangles.
The workshop brought together chairpersons from seven counties in the region including Trans Nzoia, Bungoma, West Pokot, Elgeyo Marakwet, Baringo, Turkana and Uasin Gishu who were trained on leadership qualities in leading the chamber in their respective counties.
Switch to Our Mobile Site