, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 22 – The government plans to establish a Science and Technology Scholarship Trust Fund to promote innovation and entrepreneurship skills among the youth in the country, Prime Minister Raila Odinga has said.
He told viewers during "The Economists Conferences" debate session held at a Nairobi hotel that the trust fund was critical in harnessing and nurturing the youths potential for the development of the nation.
The Premier regretted that majority of school leavers from poor backgrounds failed to realise their aspirations due to lack of avenues to explore and pursue their untapped talents.
"The government has partly unveiled a marshal plan to empower the more than 800,000 school leavers joining the already flooded job market annually. These numbers can be transformed into an asset rather than a burden," he said.
Mr Odinga said the youth were deliberately incorporated in the ongoing Economic Stimulus Programmes and other labour-intensive ventures to enable them gain needed experience since the school curriculum only offered them the theoretical perspective.
He however said the government had recommended reforms in the education sector to ensure that the curriculum offered was responsive to the demand of the job market.
The debate whose theme focused on "Africa\’s young Population" evaluated the opportunity and risks the explosive numbers of young people in the continent presented to the development of Africa.
Among the panellists was former anti corruption Czar John Githongo, the Economist Middle East and Africa Editor Xan Smiley and UNICEF Deputy Regional Director Elke Wisch.