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Ruto offers Gen Z employment options 

President William Ruto of Kenya has outlined ambitious programs aimed at addressing the nation’s escalating youth unemployment crisis, emphasizing affordable housing and labour migration as pivotal opportunities for the younger generation.

Speaking at the State House on Saturday, June 29, 2024, during a meeting with bishops from the African Independent Pentecostal Church of Africa, Ruto underscored his administration’s commitment to creating job opportunities through targeted government initiatives.

“The government has deliberate programs and policies to create job and income opportunities for our young people,” Ruto declared.

“These include the Affordable Housing Programme, digital jobs, labour migration, and industrialization through county aggregation, industrial parks, and special economic zones,” he added.

The president added that the initiatives to unlock employment opportunities would be discussed during the proposed multi-sectoral forums with youth leaders, clerics and others.

“The proposed youth and multi-sectoral forums will give the youth and other stakeholders a platform to discuss these and other national economic challenges that face our country.

“Met leaders of the African Independent Pentecostal Church Africa who committed to take part in the multi-sectoral forum, State House Nairobi. They included 96 bishops led by Presiding Archbishop Samson Muthuri,” Ruto said.

Members of the African Independent Pentecostal Church of Africa during a meeting with President William Ruto at State House on June 29, 2024. PHOTO/X (@WilliamsRuto)

Multi-sectoral forums

In response to sustained anti-Finance Bill protests, predominantly led by Gen Zs, Ruto announced on Wednesday, June 26, 2024, that he would not sign the bill into law.

The President also communicated his intention to meet with a range of sectoral leaders, including the youth, clerics and others to discuss national issues.

Ruto has since engaged in a series of meetings with religious leaders to address the nation’s socio-economic issues.

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On Friday, he met with Catholic clergy, including Archbishop Maurice Muhatia, chairman of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops.

The Catholic Church has been a vocal critic of the Finance Bill and Ruto’s broader economic policies, urging the President to reconsider the legislation.

Ruto with Catholic clergy scaled
President Ruto with Catholic clergy at State House on June 28, 2024. PHOTO/X (@WilliamsRuto)

Earlier, Ruto also held discussions with leaders of the National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK), who expressed their disapproval of the government’s use of Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) to support police during the anti-Finance Bill demonstrations.

Following their meeting, the NCCK released a statement calling on the government to uphold the rule of law and protect the right to peaceful assembly.

“The youth of Kenya have exercised their right to peaceful picketing as part of their participation in national life,” the NCCK statement read.

“We demand that the state stops curtailing this right by using police and military force.”

Ruto’s recent engagements highlight a broader strategy to involve the youth in the country’s development process, aiming to mitigate the risk of future unrest by addressing the root causes of economic dissatisfaction.

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