The online space has the ability to reduce unemployment among the youth in Kenya

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The digital space in Kenya has grown to such a point that it is able to provide full time employment to those willing to put in the time and effort. Take blogging for example, a few years back no one would have thought that it could be considered a career with many thinking that it was just a waste of time. Fast forward to today and there is a considerable number of bloggers who are making good money from it that they have made it a full time business. The same can be said about e-commerce which has enabled young entreprenuers to sell their wares without having a physical shop through the use of platforms like OLX, Facebook and many others.

The Cabinet Secretary for ICT Mr. Joe Mucheru echoed the same sentiments while delivering a talk on the future of work at the Dedan Kimathi University. During the talk he urged the youth to take advantage of internet in the country in their pursuit of jobs. He added that Kenya has one of the most active online populations in Africa with a user base growing with over 37.7 million individuals being online out of a population of about 47.2 million. Mobile and internet penetration also stands at a regional high of over 80 percent and 85 percent respectively.

According to the CS, the youth should seek to understand the online trends and the changing global environment of work. This changing global environment has seen some of the tedious jobs being outsourced to markets that have young populations such as Kenya’s. This has created opportunities which the youth can exploit to seek and secure online jobs.

The CS also announced that his ministry in partnership with Kenya Private Sector Alliance will commence training of 10,000 young people through the Ajira Digital Programme across the country as from June. Ajira Digital Programme is funded by Rockefeller Foundation. In support of the programme the CS said the government intends to outsource some of its work to online platforms to enable the youth access the opportunities. Other than this he stated that his ministry is currently rolling out constituency innovation hubs in partnership with National Constituency Development Fund Board to provide free Wi-Fi in four locations in all the 290 counties in the country.

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