Wednesday, December 30, 2009

2010 and the NYC Movement for Change

Good People --

Finally 2009 has come to an end.

Early this year, hundreds of you chose to be part of the National Youth Convention in ensuring that the youth Movement in Kenya gets a new vibrance in advocating for the rights of the Kenyan youth and make change happen in Kenya. This followed the the 2008 Convention when The National Youth Convention was established through consensus as the Forum and Movement of the Patriotic Youth of Kenya; with the objective of transforming Kenya into a democratic, just and prosperous Nation by the 1300 delegates who gathered on Saturday 20
th day of September 2008. 

The Movement is a democratic and progressive youth-led transformation Movement in Kenya and working with women, persons with dissabilities, trade unions, democratically minded proffessionals, special interest groups, progressive religious leaders and pro-change political leaders.

Some people tried to distract the progress and gains made but you remained stedfast and now we look at 2010 with more hope for better things to come. This year we have been more vocal on the constitutional agenda with several town hall kind of meetings happening in different parts of the country and a few local youth development tours by the leadership of the NYC working with many of you.  

We have built a massive organization, driven by a lean team of leaders, that directly reached out to over 5000 youth across Kenya and made your voices heard on the national agenda--- the constitution, the youth policy, the youth council bill, the youth enterprise development fund and leadership in general.

We are proud to have conducted over 30 locally hosted meetings with youth from all over Kenya to address various national agenda items. Next year we will be on record as we plan over 500 local encounters that will see the grassroots sprout out with action oriented activities for the development of the welfare of the fellow Kenyan youth.

In the coming year, our opponents will make a final stand to block our legitimate action to make your voices heard. With your support we will defeat them and make the Kenyan youth continue to champion the change that this country so deservedly need. We MUST defeat the status quo and bring back democratic rule to Kenya and promote an open society where the youth will live to enjoy for generations to come.

Kindly take a moment at year's end to reflect on everything you've built, and to find new energies to support the NYC as we engage a new gear in 2010.

It is you who has built NYC to become the remarkable movement that it is today.

Thank you to all of you who made 2009 the year that redefined the focus of NYC. Thank you for those of you who turned out in our community youth development tours. Thank you for those of you that attended the constitutional town hall meetings. Thank you for those of you that gave their views to the committee of experts on the constitutional review process.

We cant forget to thank our partners and supporters for making this year be the success that it was. We look forward to closer collaboration as we get to stump out dictatorial impunity in our country.

A new concept will be rolling out in 2010, that of Volunteer Community Organizers that will take our campaign to every doorstep of Kenyans from the cities to the grassroots around the country. Please take up the challenge to be come the NYC Change Makers in community, and we will grow. I hope 2010 we will click that ambitious million for a better Kenya.

Kindly recruit a new young Kenyan to join us today in this movement for change in Kenya. You can spread the word throughout our communities and bring on board more people, be part of the redefinition of the Kenyan History.

We look forward to working closely with you,

Sincere regards and all the best of wishes for 2010.


Emmanuel Dennis
For and on Behalf of the NYC Team

The National Youth Convention (NYC) Young People Reworking Kenya,              A project of the Youth of Kenya in creating the movement for change      P.O. Box 8799, 00200 Nairobi,  

Monday, December 21, 2009

Seasons Greetings from NYC : Kenya

Dear Good Kenyans,
2009 is flying past. It has been a year of searching and finding our place in society. We did what we could have done in our best capacities. We are all looking forward to 2010, a New Year filled with opportunities and challenges. At this time we also reflect, and are grateful for, the tremendous commitment and teamwork of so many of you who are striving towards a shared vision of a free Kenya, a Kenya that works together to find innovative solutions to every day life challenges that the youth are facing today.
May this festive season bring with it good tidings in your lives.   

Thank you for being a part of this tremendous work that we have achieved this year.


Emmanuel Dennis,
For and on Behalf of the NYC Team,

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Youth Fund Board Resignation exemplifies kicks of a dying hoarse

Young Kenyans,
Hellen Tombo and Team finally kicked the Youth Fund Bucket off their mandate and resigned en mass.

Looking at this move I thought OK... Why now that they know their term is coming to an end in three weeks time?
Didn't they spend alot of money using our taxes to fight each other and so why resign when the issues they were arguing about had not been resolved?

Shouldn't they now be arrested for messing up with the PESA za Vijana wa Kenya?
Now that they have done that, so should the other Hellen in the Ministry resign as well so that the mess in the YEDF and the MOYAS be fixed once and for all.
Shouldnt the two Assistant Ministers be sacked as well?

They have all not served the interests of the Young Kenyans but their own.

An opportunity knocks now for the young people of Kenya to put pressure on the Governement to put in place a credible Youth Fund Board that will steer the noble idea to greater height. If we do not do it. We will complain yet again when old folks are appointed to the Board. Its your call.

Emmmanuel Dennis.

Emmanuel Dennis Ngongo
P.O. Box 8799 - 00200
Nairobi Kenya
Cell: +254 722619005

Saturday, November 21, 2009

The Gaps on Youth in the Draft Constitution

Dear Young Kenyans

While there has been an attempt to have provisions in the draft constitution, recognizing that many of the recommendations as presented by the youth have been taken care of, there still lacks important aspects to enact the meaningful participation of young people who make up over 70% of the total population.

The following recommendations are an attempt to promoting a discussion to ensure the youth are an integral part of the provisions as provided for the in the draft constitution.

In general this draft is the best Kenya has ever had and the National Youth Convention is calling on its constituent members and young people of Kenya in general to support this draft and come out in large numbers to make recommendations for amendments and finally participate in civic education for communities so that Kenya can attain a new constitution.

The recommendations below are for debate and discussion purposes. A final position shall be reached at after the finalization of the youth consultative meetings schedule for 24 locations in all the eight provinces;


The Agenda of Young People in the Constitution


There is a good attempt to include a preamble in the draft however;

The need to recognize, protect and promote our national symbols.


No 10: State and Religion

If the state and religion are separate then there should be no mention of religious institutions in the constitution.


National Values, Principles and Goals should be defined for ease of understanding. They are long statements. This are the things the citizens need to memorize and keep at their minds all the time. The more simple they are the easier it will be to remember them.



No. 40: YOUTH

1.       There is need to include A CLEAR definition of youth from 18 to 35 years.

2.       The state shall take legislative and other measures, including but not limited to affirmative action policies and programmes to –

a)      Promote the welfare of youth;

b)      Ensure representative political participation by youth;

c)       Protect the youth from cultural practices that undermine their dignity and quality of life;

d)      Establish an independent National Youth Council or Commission to oversee the activities of youth and youth serving organizations for the good welfare of the development of youth;

e)      Promote their intellectual abilities by providing the necessary frameworks for career growth

f)       Create new opportunities and jobs for the youth

No. 60 Labour Relations

An introduction and definition for minimum wage for all employers to conform to.

Introduce the rights to protection of intellectual property of the youth innovation and creativity.

Part 3 – Human Rights and Gender Commission

A youth representative to the membership of this commission.

The Youth representative shall have professional knowledge and experience of and special responsibility for matters relating to youth



Part 2 – Composition and membership of Parliament

Membership of the senate

No. 125

To consist of 2 Youth representatives and not clumped in persons with disabilities. The 2 representative shall be a young lady and a young man.

Where women are given the right of affirmative action so should the youth.

Membership of the National Assembly

No. 126

There should be a provision to consist of

-          youth elected one each by the constituencies,

-          Youth elected one each by the counties

-          Seven Members who shall be youth , no more than four of whom shall be the same gender;

Qualification and disqualifications for elections as a member

No. 127

(2) Include a A person is disqualified from being elected a member of parliament if that person –

(g) Has been recalled by 50% of the constituents as will be provided for in the recall clause to be legislated by the constitution.

Right to recall

No. 131

The constitution should make direct provisions on the recall and not abdicate this responsibility to members of parliament. Members of parliament will not legislate how to be recalled. The constitution should set the basic minimums in the recall clause.

Remuneration of Members

Introduce a Clause on the Remuneration of Members of Parliament to be determined by the Salaries and remuneration commission that shall harmonize the salaries with those of other civil servants.

Part 5 – Miscellaneous

Parliamentary Service Commission

No. 154

(d) A provision should be made for two members to represent the interest of youth as defined by age



No 178

Remuneration and benefits of state President and Deputy State President to be determined by the salaries and remuneration commission and harmonized with those of other civil servants. So is the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister.

Cabinet and Deputy Ministers

Not fewer than fifteen and not more than twenty.

Half of which shall not be MPs and whose composition MUST comprise of qualified Youth in the relevant Ministries responsible for youth affairs.

The Deputy Ministers should be given a semblance of responsibilities as shall be provided for by the public service commission to make them effective.



Part 5 - Budgets


No. 257

The Constitution should make a provision to guarantee that of the National Budget, 60% shall be Development and 40% for Recurrent expenditure respectively at all levels of government including devolved governments.

Part 7 – Institutions

Salaries and Remuneration Commission

No. 268

The commission should consist of the persons listed as well as

-          One person designated by the National Youth Council/Commission

Economic and Social Council


Among the nine persons

One member shall be designated by the National Youth Council/Commission

The Constitution should determine the membership so that the President does not appoint his cronies as members. While this membership should be vetted by the Parliament.




The Constitution shall establish an independent National Youth Council/Commission to manage and control youth development and matters relating to regulation and financing of youth and youth serving agencies in the country.

The Council or commission shall be directly elected by the Youth without the interference of the Legislature.




Police Service Commission

No. 293.

The membership to comprise of one representative from the National Youth Council/Commission




No. 295. (2) The commissions are-

Include: The National Youth Council/Commission


Other recommendations

Popular Versions of the Constitution

The Government should make the constitution and translate it into popular language and make copies available to all citizens and every public office in order to popularize the content among Kenyans.

National Symbols: The National Flag

Symbols like the National Flag should be promoted and respected by all the people. The Kenyan citizens should be given the constitutional rights to fly the national flag on their premises, automobiles as long as it does end in abuse. The National Flag should be the pride of all citizens as such it should not be criminal for the people to proudly display the national flag wherever they are.


What's your take?


Emmanuel Dennis

For National Youth Convention

Monday, November 9, 2009

Senegal: Interview with a farmer -- Economic Justice


Title: Senegal: Interview with a farmer
Author: Interview, Isolda Agazzi, Geneva
Category: Economic Justice
Date: 11/9/2009
Source: IPS
Source Website:

African Charter Article# 20: All peoples shall have the right to existence and self determination and the right to free themselves from the bonds of domination.

Summary & Comment: This West African Farmer argues that developed countries will not eliminate export subsidies by 2013, as agreed at the World Trade Organisation's ministerial conference in Hong Kong. And they will not reduce their trade-distorting domestic support either! They will just shift notifications between the amber, blue, and green boxes. DN

"One can't work 18 hours a day and still be poor"
- Isolda Agazzi interviews Babacar Ndao, a West African farmer

Given the billions of dollars and euros that the U.S. and EU spend on trade-distorting support measures and the intractable lobby groups demanding these subsidies, these rich states' promises to reduce such amounts will come to nought. It makes no sense for poor African states to allow these goods to flood their markets. This is the view of Babacar Ndao, a farmer from Senegal and a member of the West African Network of Farmers' Organisations and Agricultural Producers, known by its French acronym ROPPA. He was in Geneva recently at the invitation of Our World Is Not For Sale's agriculture working group.

Our World Is Not For Sale is a loose grouping of non-governmental organisations, activists and social movements "fighting the current model of corporate globalisation embodied in the global trading system". Like the other invited farmers from Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe, Ndao is critical of the text presented in December 2008 by Ambassador Crawford Falconer which still constitutes the basis of the Doha Round talks on agriculture. Ndao argues that developed countries will not eliminate export subsidies by 2013, as agreed at the World Trade Organisation's ministerial conference in Hong Kong. Neither will they reduce their trade-distorting domestic support. Instead, they have become skilful in shifting notifications between the so-called amber, blue and green boxes.

  • The "amber box" contains all domestic support measures considered to distort production and trade and for which only minimal ("de minimis") supports are allowed.
  • The "blue box" is like the amber box but with conditions attached that are designed to reduce distortion. At present it has no limits on spending.
  • The "green box" contains subsidies that don't distort trade, or at most cause minimal distortion.

Isolda Agazzi interviewed a disillusioned Ndao for whom these boxes are nothing but Russian dolls with which rich countries hide their trade-distorting practices.

IPS: What do you expect from the Doha Round?

Babacar Ndao (BN): The text is not satisfactory because the protection of agricultural goods is weak. Rich countries, like the European Union and the U.S., will never be able to respect their commitments to reduce subsidies and will just shift support between boxes. The support of product-specific de minimis, such as subsidies for food and bio fuels, has not been taken into consideration by the chair of the agricultural committee (currently ambassador David Walker from New Zealand). According to the de minimis clause, developed countries are allowed to exclude five percent of product-specific and nonproduct-specific support from the amber box while developing countries can exclude 10 percent of the same.

The U.S. will never be able to meet its offer to reduce by 70 percent its overall trade-distorting domestic support. This support was at 28 billion dollars in 2007 but only 8,5 billions were notified by Washington at the WTO. As for the EU that is supposed to cut its overall trade-distorting domestic support by 80 percent, its subsidies amounted to 72,9 billion euros in 2005 but Brussels notified only 42,1 billions. The gap between the notified subsidies and the real ones is huge, particularly for the EU, which has inscribed its single farm payment regime of 14,7 billion euros in the green box. (The single farm payment, introduced by the EU in the 2003 Common Agricultural Policy, separates the aid received by farmers from the amount of production.)

But, in March 2005, the WTO appellate body in the cotton case presented by Brazil had ruled that the fixed payments by the U.S. cannot be put into the green box because farmers don't have the right to use those payments to produce fruit and vegetables. In the EU they are not allowed to use this money to produce fruits, vegetables, milk, sugar (a production quota runs until 2015) and wine, and there are ceilings on cotton and tobacco. This all shows that the US and the EU will never be able to respect their offers. We are asked to open up our markets, but the protection we are granted in return is very weak.

IPS: Do you have another example?

BN: Yes, cotton. The December text has calculated that internal subsidies to cotton must be reduced to 42 million dollars per year in the U.S.. But subsidies for exported cotton, only, were already 2, 2 billion dollars! This problem is without a solution. And if cotton is not solved, then it doesn't make any sense for us to conclude the Doha Round. We met with senior representatives of the Cotton Four countries (Benin, Burkina Faso, Mali and Chad) and found that cotton is more of a priority for them because they speak in the name of the 36 African cotton-exporting countries.

The Doha Round will strengthen the power of multinational corporations. Regulating the market and managing supply is very important, but the current WTO rules go in the opposite direction. Many economists recognise that the food crisis was generated by the policies dictated by the WTO. If you produce a lot, then prices drop. If you don't produce enough, then your market is invaded with subsidised products.

IPS: But the Doha Round foresees important steps, like the elimination of
export subsidies by 2013.

BN: It is a bluff! Developed countries will not be able to eliminate export subsidies and to reduce domestic trade-distorting ones. Even if they allowed developing countries to maintain tariffs on special products - which would represent 20 percent of tariff lines - it will never compensate for the losses generated by cutting tariffs. And currently tariffs are already so low that, whatever the special products, they will never compensate for the difference.

IPS: Are your concerns shared by the governmental delegations you met in

BN: We have the same point of view as African governments. The Agriculture Agreement (the current WTO agreement that the Doha Round is supposed to reform in a more development-balanced way) has to be fully revised and we must be allowed tariffs to protect our markets. One example is ECOWAS (the Economic Community of Western African States). We want to protect our regional market to make food sovereignty a reality. But to do so, we need three measures:

  • revision of the Agriculture Agreement;
  • a solution to price volatility by managing supply; and
  • creating rules for global competition.

One can no longer ignore the exaggerated market power of multinational corporations. American cotton producers, who generally vote for the Democrats, will not accept the reductions in subsidies. The EU says that it may be attacked by parliament if it touches the subsidies on cream and milk. Since lowering these subsidies becomes impossible, then they should not push for poor countries to lower theirs and have their markets flooded with subsidised imports.

IPS: So, do you want to take agriculture out of the WTO?

BN: What we want are fair competition rules. If one takes agriculture out of the WTO, then there still need to be rules somewhere. It is not ideological, even though liberalism has shown its limits. It's not about being leftist or rightist. Some 65 percent of ECOWAS's population – 270 million people - live on agriculture. In the EU, it is only 2,8 percent of the population. ROPPA asks for fair rules for competition. The farmers' organisations from all continents ask for the same, be it within or outside the WTO. One cannot work 18 hours a day and still be poor.

IPS: But can you really put all developing countries in the same basket?
The Doha Round foresees flexibilities and least developed countries
won't have to cut any tariffs.

BN: ROPPA is a sub-regional organisation that fights for all farmers and fishers in West Africa. In the ECOWAS, we want to build our own regional market with trade preferences, like others have done. We have three non-LDCs in West Africa (Ghana, Côte d'Ivoire and Nigeria). If a country's market is invaded (because of low tariffs) by subsidised products, all the region will be invaded at the same time because we have a common external tariff.

Disclaimer: Opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the AfricaFiles' editors and network members. They are included in our material as a reflection of a diversity of views and a variety of issues. Material written specifically for AfricaFiles may be edited for length, clarity or inaccuracies.

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Saturday, November 7, 2009

Constitutionalism and Good Governance


·         Historical perspective of the Kenyan constitution making process from the

o   Lancaster talks

o    the emergence in 1990's for a new constitution

o   the referendum

o   NARC promises

o   Committee of Experts

o   Draft Constitution coming up soon.

·         The Constitution as governance framework of the country.

·         Constitution making process to be all inclusive.

Issues presented by the Youth to the CoE

·         A democratic constitution by the people for peaceful and prosperous Kenya.

·         A youth friendly constitution.


·         Lack f a preamble which is the statement of purpose expressing our values as a nation.

Areas of Consensus

·         Dual citizenship for Kenyans who want it.

·         Devolution of power and responsibility with units of devolution and resources to be clarified in the new constitution.

·         A recall clause to be included for Non performing MPs in order to bring about accountability.

·         Removal of the presidential age limit at 35 years and make qualification to be based on ethical and moral standing.

·         President not to be a Member of Parliament

·         President's remuneration to be decided by an independent body like the salaries and remuneration commission.

·         Cabinet to be made of professional outside parliament, recruited by an independent body, approved by parliament and appointed by the president.

·         The number of cabinet Ministers not to exceed 15 for efficiency and control of spending.


·         Legislative representation to comprise of 30% Women, 50% Youth, and 20% Minorities.

·         MPs salaries to be harmonized with those of other civil servants

·         Independent candidates to be allowed to vie out of the Political party system.

·         A Limited tenure of MPs to be put at 2 terms of 5 years each.


·         The office of the AG to be separated from the office of Director of public prosecutions.

·         AG and CJ to be recruited by and independent body, vetted by Parliament and appointed by the president.

The Bill of rights

·         To include all the inalienable rights and freedoms of all Kenyans which are to be clearly spelt out.

·         Land to be communally owned.

·         Leasehold period to be reduced from 999 years to 99 years.

·         Introduce taxes for land ownership.

·         No land to be allowed to lay idle.

Contentious issues

·         System of governance (Presidential, Parliamentary, Hybrid)

·         Presidential age cap and education.

·         Devolution Regional, Economic)



·         Kenya currently has an imperial presidency which perpetuates impunity. Power holders have the leverage of hiding behind the constitution to break it at the expense of rights holders.

·         There is no ownership of the current constitution because it was brought from Lancaster.

·         The President, Police, MPs are all breaking the la and getting away with it due to the system that has been created.


Key Questions

·         What do we do to promote and protect our cultural diversity?

·         What kind of country do we want for the future generations?

·         Are we in a better position today?

·         Do we need to change?

·         What is your individual responsibility in ensuring that something positive is done?

·         Will Kenya change to the better with a new constitution?

·         What kind of country did we inherit from our fore fathers?

·         What should we do?



1.       Young people should now drive the constitution review process by engaging in the civic education management at community level.

2.       The constitution should be written for the common good of Mwananchi.

3.       The constitution should carry a culture of values that will drive Kenya for generations.

4.       All Kenyans must engage in the process of finding out what their new constitution entails.

5.       The youth should start holding similar meetings at community level to educate other Kenyans.

6.       The youth need to take control of the process before Politicians do so that their peers, parents and leaders are aware of the facts.

Way Forward

·         170 town hall meetings, 1 date country wide will help push the agenda.


Questions and Answers????????

One Man one Vote system????

Kadhis court.?????


"We have wasted so many resources in the past on the quest for anew constitution. The onus is on us as a generation. Sometimes it calls upon a generation to be great. You can be that generation"


Emmanuel Dennis Ngongo
P.O. Box 8799 - 00200
Nairobi Kenya
Cell: +254 722619005

Friday, October 30, 2009

Invitation to the Town Hall Meeting in Nakuru on Constitutionalism and Good Governance

Topic for Discussion: Constitutionalism and Good Governance

Venue: ACK  Diocese Hall - Nakuru

Date: Tuesday, 3rd November 2009 

Time: 2.00PM - 4.00PM

The Government of Kenya has appointed a Committee of Experts to identify contentious issues in the Constitution review process, develop consensus and make proposals for a new draft Constitution for Kenya.

Inevitably this is a political process due to the various interests that musts be considered for the draft Constitution to gain wide spread support. It is also a legal process that will either determine the new laws to be established in order to conform with the Constitution or "constitutionalize" existing laws.

Youth organizations made submissions made to the Committee of Experts on contentious issues as seen by young people and suggestions on how to address them. In July 2009, several young people from around the country convened in Nairobi to discuss the various submission and made attempts to build consensus.

At the end of the meeting it was clear that there remained several issues on which consensus needed to be developed. This remains the challenge for the Committee of Experts.

As young people, some who have been part of the constitutional review processes through the years, and others for whom it seems "new there are questions we must ask as responsible citizens to ensure quality contribution towards building consensus in the constitutional reform process.

· What are the key things we should ask ourselves as we prepare for a new constitutional dispensation?

· What spirit do we wish for the Constitution to have?

· What are our basic minimums as young people for a "suitable" constitution?

· What basic principles we should consider as we undergo the constitutional reform process?

· What is our contribution as young people to the reform process?

On Tuesday 3rd November 2009, there will be a meeting at the ACK Diocese Hall in Nakuru to deliberate on these matters from 2 – 4 p.m.

Please pass on this invitations to your networks and friends in Nakuru. All are welcome!


Emmanuel Dennis

Emmanuel Dennis Ngongo
National Youth Convention (NYC)
P.O. Box 8799 - 00200
Nairobi Kenya
Cell: +254 722619005

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Silence is Deafening - Young People's Participation in Civic Affairs in Kenya

I don't think the Ministry of Youth Affairs in the persons of the Minister and the Permanent secretary are serving the interest of Young People in Kenya. Everything at the Ministry is now a circus between the minister and the rest of the people.

We deserve better as the young people of Kenya. I think we have a right to call for the sacking of the four people in charge of the Ministry (The Minister, The two assistant Ministers and the Permanent Secretary. The Ministry requires a total overhaul. It is a shame to the Kenyan youth.

It is high time young people started feeling the services of the Ministry. They are not at the moment. We need a call to action on this.


On Wed, Oct 28, 2009 at 5:28 PM, sonia rasugu <> wrote:
I share in Ronnie's sentiments.

There is so much "wrong" going on, on the one hand, and all the facade
about how things are getting better on the other.

There's all TALK about reform and attempts at evidence of how this is
working well, and all the white collar robbery on the other.

There's the recession and high inflation going on, and yet there seems
to be lots of money in circulation among a few.

And in all this, young people are clearly identified as the makers of
Kenya today and tomorrow.

In 2005, new Government demonstrated its commitment to prioritizing
youth affairs by establishing the Ministry Youth Affairs.  The
Ministry has since grown in size and in representation around the
country.  In spite of the many shortcomings young people identify in
the capacity of the youth officers to address the numerous needs,
there have been some benefits to having youth officers in divisions
and districts. I am aware of efforts to increase and improve the
capacity of youth officers to support young people and be more

In 2007, Government launched the Youth Enterprise Development Fund.
With KShs 1 Billion, it hoped to create new jobs through youth-led
small scale enterprises countrywide. The constituency based fund
(C-YES) has lots of weaknesses in terms of structure and
accountability; it has benefitted those young entrepreneurs who were
focussed and skilled enough to use that "little" KShs 47, 500 and some
now have access to KShs 100, 000 from the constituency fund while
others qualify to access loans from financial institutions. TThis is
progress. The larger loans from financial institutions also have
accountability issues and worse still are not known to be accessible
to several young entrepreneurs, even in urban areas.

In 2008, the launch of the non-starter, poorly planned (actually not
planned at all!) and very poorly executed Kazi kwa Vijana programme.
Ironically, there are countries in the modern World (and not the post
2nd World War Germany for infrastructure reconstruction on which KKV
was modelled), countries like Phillipines that have instituted a
vocational/apprenticeship programme that works. If only KKV
implementers were truly committed to supporting creation of employment
and sustainable infrastructure development they would have given more
thought to ensure widespread benefits to individual youth and

In this Forum, we consistently highlight the importance of good
leadership for Kenya's prosperity.  When it comes to youth affairs,
leadership by youth organizations, the Ministry of Youth Affairs and
the Youth Fund Board are critical. If there were youth involved in the
design and executive of KKV, clearly they did not serve young people's

The Ministry of Youth Affairs had leadership in the late PS Murugu.
His absence is felt - love him or not.  The new PS, is yet to
demonstrate the enthusiam, vigour and passion for youth development
that the late Murugu espoused. So we wait to see.
When Hon Minister Hellen Sambili was named Minister of Youth Affairs
and Sports in 2007, we did the same, "wait and see" . And now, it's
unbelievable to see how much chaos she seems to be courting in sports
and most recently in youth affairs.

Last week, she reinstated the CEO of the Youth Fund who had been
dismissed by the Fund Board in May 2009. Her basis for his
reisnstatement was a tentative report from KACC saying he was "clean"
of any deals on Enablis - remember the "scandal that never was" of 600
billion from Canadian based Enablis.

From the statement it turns out that he was dismissed for various
other reasons - and the Enablis deal was not among them.

The statement by the Youth Fund Board leaves it to you to determine
the integrity of the Youth Enterprise Fund Board, made of young
professionals. I think this is leadership - a little too late - they
could have sorted it out when he was running around media houses
saying he was being "targetted"; but they stand their ground.

The statement is here attached. It is two pages and very long.

But I must ask,
1. if we are to assess leadership of the Ministry of Youth Affairs
what would you say have been Hon Sambili's achievements in promoting
youth affairs/issues at the national and international level?
2. What have been the benefits of the establishment of the Ministry of
Youth Affairs (national HQ to the divisional and district youth
3. And the Youth Fund?

Hoping to share in your thoughts.


On 10/27/09, Ronnie <> wrote:
> Comrades,
> We are being chocked to a slow death. It doesn't help that we were already on the death bed when they started chocking us.
> The statistics in regards to the youth are clear for all of us and I will not belabour the point here. However, let me say this, we are filling up the jails of Kenya, we are now suffering diseases that were previously the preserve of the old, we are going to the grave in equal measure as we are being born, we are filling the streets of our cities looking for jobs, we are being worn down by the burdens of the older generation. We are the youth of Kenya. And yet every single initiative that we have fought for over the years is being trashed and we remain silent.
> Kazi kwa Vijana has ground to a halt, the Ministry of Youth is defunct thanks to a moribund Minister, the Youth Fund is now locked in ego wars, Ministry of Finance and that of Planning are rethinking the stimulus programme that would have benefited us and we remain silent.
> Our leaders are waiting for 2012 when they will again come back to us to offer them 'protection' for a fee and whip up the vote for them. And where the vote will not be going their way, they will count on us to 'teach a lesson' to their detractors.
> We are busy talking about Kalonzo Musyoka, William Ruto, Raila Odinga, Mwai Kibaki and even Maina Njenga. All men who are extremely wealthy with no care for the rest of the world.
> We cannot afford to keep talking. We cannot afford to sit back anymore and wait for things to fall into place. We must take destiny into our own hands.
> My cry is that we shall start seeing agitation from the grassroots. If we cannot live in comfort, then our so called leaders must not live in comfort. For as long as we remained worried about our tomorrow, they must remain worried about their tomorrow.
> Rise up and let us pressure them to move with us or move out of the way!
> Ronnie

Friday, October 2, 2009

Support Social Entrepreneurship Google's 10 to the 100 competition calling for votes

Dear All,

As a fellow Changemaker, we thought you would be interested in knowing that Google's Project 10 to the 100 has identified social entrepreneurship as one of the top 16 ideas that will change the world. Now they are asking you to vote to help them identify the biggest opportunity for change.

As an organization which has been promoting social entrepreneurship for almost 30 years we know that nothing creates a greater impact than a visionary social entrepreneur who can identify solutions where others only see problems, empowering their community to bring about change.

If you share our belief in social entrepreneurship please vote for the social entrepreneurship idea, or vote for another of your favorite ideas. You may also nominate an organization who you feel is best placed to carry out the idea.

Google will commit $10 million to organizations to implement the top 5 ideas (as nominated by the public and an advisory board.)

Be sure to vote by October 8, 2009.

If you would like to spread the word about this competition feel free to use this sample Tweet: "Do you believe that Social Entrepreneurship changes the world? Vote for the #SocEnt idea in Google's 10 to the 100 comp:"


Emmanuel Dennis

International Advisory Board Member, Open Society Institute Youth Initiative 
Regional Coordinator YES Inc. Campaign
Convener, National Youth Convention

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Re: NYC : IT'S TEAMWORK OR NO NYC -The National Youth Council a Mirage or a Reality in Kenya!

Dear Comrades,

From the start, we have had lived the life of Comrades. Every day when I contribute anything positive to the life of fellow comrades, I always do it looking forward to an end of the day when we will toast our cups for the feast of comrade life.  Then we would be able to reflect and look back to the times when we tried to be part of this world shared by millions of young people. At the end of the day, do we want to look at ourselves as victorious as a team or divided as individuals?

Thus far, history has taught us that a divided Government will never head Kenya on the right path.  We seem to have forgotten our values as NYCeers (Comrades) and have started aping what is going on in the current Government where everybody wants to shine as an individual forgetting that he/she needs a full cabinet to make any reachable goals or reality.  Or have we given up on teamwork?  Why is the trust we had for our fellow comrades fading away all of a sudden? And are we converting our dreams into a Utopian dream or a realistic possibility?

NYC is not about fighting or solving out our differences.  It has always provided an opportunity for mentoring one another.  Today, for a Kenyan youth to find a mentor is never easy, especially when everyone around is diseased to a level where they feel chronically insecure of you just by virtue of being a youth.  When the NYC bill came around, I mean, we realized it needed some ammendments and this was for the benefit fo all the young people whose lives were men't to be improved by that bill.  Due to the limited time that we had, the best way forward was to approach some of those who were meant to pass this bill in parliament, reason with them and share some of the ideas on how best the ammendments would be made without interfering with the whole process.  This worked out very well and so far there seem to be some light in the tunnel.  Kudos to those who tried!  One of the reasons why things happened this way was because most of us realized that our Members of Parliament meant to pass this bill are busy people and without making a move, the chances of them passing a bill without even going through it was so high.  Reasons being its a bill that doesn't even touch any of them, i.e. apart from the money matters.  To date, nobody has come up with an alternative approach and that is why I want to believe the majority of us are in for what has worked.  For now, we have a bill to ammend and once its done, we have a task ahead to operationalize this bill.

Secondly, let us not forget that whatever we share or whichever actions we take, we do  it for the benefit of all of us.  We all don't come from Nairobi and therefore depend on the mails or phone calls to level up with those on the ground.  So, when we shun others from sharing their actions and best way forward, how are we going to ensure that we are singing the same song?  And where are we supposed to merge our ideas and ensure that all our needs are taken into consideration during major decision making processes?  Besides, we need those updates to know who is doing what where in order to decide on how best we can contribute from a distance.

Working harder, putting the best into the game and solving the puzzles as a team, could do wonders for us all.  Growth is something natural to everyone, and nobody ceases to grow simply because others are growing.  So lets not fear giving others a chance to grow but instead fight for perfection, honesty and commitment to make our little world big for us!  This could be done only through perserverance, sincerity and resolutness.  Certainly, we cannot afford to lose our past now, but whichever actions we take either as individuals or as a group, the world is watching. If we truly have a dream to pass on the legacy to others then we must learn to appreciate as well as acknowledge others.  For our Society would be better if we shun our false ego and develop deeper sense able to look into the fruition of time! 

We have come from far and are doing a good job.



From: Emmanuel Dennis <>
Sent: Saturday, September 26, 2009 12:47:14 AM
Subject: NYC Re: The National Youth Council a Mirage or a Reality in Kenya!

My Good Friend Fwamba NC Fwamba "The ROCK",
Thanks for the questions. I will attempt to shade light on the issues you raised.
Several suggestions have been mooted on the ending mandate of the YEDF Board and also the pending National Youth Council Bill both in this forum and off line. We have been searching for answers. 

Refer to the resolutions of NYC IV at Bomas of Kenya for the mandate as given to the NYC. Since this is an emerging issue, you are most welcome to suggest. Otherwise we will be making noise again after the Bill has been passed and the board has been appointed. The approach is to have as many youth groups in Kenya submitting their proposals to the Ministry independently. This will will show that young people in Kenya care about processes that are geared towards their welfare. It will also show the interest that the youth have in national processes. 

The NYC's mandate is to promote the full participation of the youth in the national agenda. If we the youth keep quiet someone will do that duty for us and am sure we wont make merry when the news finally dawn on us.

On your issue around legitimacy,
We are all Kenyans and should have an inherent right to voice our concerns on issues that affect us without any one questioning the legitimacy of those concerns as long as they are for the good welfare of society.The inaugural YEDF Board will be reaching the peak of its term as per to the constitution. A new one will be put in place. It is about responsive citizenship to make sure we the youth have a voice in this only issue that concerns us. 

Fwamba is one of the most responsive kenyan, citizens based on the track record of what you have done and experienced as you fight for the good welfare of Kenyans. It would be foolhardy for any one to ask you questions as to Who gave you the mandate? or Were you legitimate to do what you did?

I think it is clear that all  processes taking place on this NYC forum, are open with the participation of all. All suggestions are welcome. So is yours.

May the forces be with you.


On Fri, Sep 25, 2009 at 12:17 PM, crispus fwamba <> wrote:
What method do we use to ensure that we have the right names.and what gives NYC mandate to carry out all these activities such as meeting ministers and the ilk.I hope its not selfish lobbying games.and who has the authority to submit the so called list?I hope this is not a conspiracy of self imposed leaders of the youth.What is the legitimacy of whoever is supposed to compile"the list".This is because many people have done a lot about this without necessarily shouting about it.

From: Emmanuel Dennis <>
Sent: Thursday, September 24, 2009 5:58:44 AM

Subject: NYC Re: The National Youth Council a Mirage or a Reality in Kenya!

Good people,
Susan, your issues are spot on. We need to point them out and ensure we have all the support in terms of numbers and voice to ensure those amendments are carried into the bill. The problem is that only limited amendments are permissible. Lets carry on the lobbying.

Stella raises key issues and i think, we have the voice and will to ensure we determine what kind of Council we will get. If we continue the discussion and engage the MPs then they will give us what we want. I am in agreement with Mwalulu that we should directly target the War lords. I am volunteering my self, and i want more volunteers so that we can purpose to meet Raila, Uhuru, Ruto, Balala, Kalonzo. In the first and second week of October in order to drum up support for the council. I am also availing my self to
be part of the team that will meet Hon Sophia Abdi as they meet with the Minister MOYAS and deliberately make the recommendations at the Committee Level.

I second Sonia's suggestion that Youth Agenda and AYT keep us in the loop on all the developments so that we are able to make the necessarily objective voices into the debate. Engaging the youth at the mashinani is critical, we have a number of local initiatives going on, let us make those forums, encompass the NYC discussions.

Mungatana was not out of order, I was also having the same feeling when I was reading Oparanya's contribution.

Sonia, on the suggestion of compiling names for the YEDF Board, can we come up with a mechanism to do that, and can we give our selves a timeline to have the names submitted to the Ministry? They say Fortune favors the bold. Let us all be bold on this, we wont lose it.

I am giving this process my all.


Emmanuel Dennis Ngongo
P.O. Box 8799 - 00200
Nairobi Kenya
Cell: +254 722619005

On Thu, Sep 24, 2009 at 8:41 AM, Stella Agara <> wrote:

Thanks, I try.


From: [] On Behalf Of Ochieng kh
Sent: Thursday, September 24, 2009 11:30 AM

Subject: NYC Re: The National Youth Council a Mirage or a Reality in Kenya!


Thanks Stella for sharing very useful resources. I salute your efforts and commitment with honor and humility. From the Hansard report, it is evident that there is good-will for the establishment of the national Youth Council. There is need therefore to build on the gains generated so far not by blaming or criticizing but rather by expressing gratitude to the members of parliament who supported the bill and secondy by continued engagement and dialogue around issues germane to the refinement of the Bill. I suggest NYC should write to these exemplary members of parliament as well as possibly host a further consultative meeting on the next steps in so far as the bill is at issue. All in all, kudos for the good progress. Best wishes always,  

Ochieng M.K
Phone Number (Office) +254-20-3861530/1
Cell Phone Number:+254-723-745-817

"We can nobly save or meanly lose the last best hope of earth" Abraham Lincoln

--- On Thu, 9/24/09, Stella Agara <> wrote:

From: Stella Agara <>
Subject: NYC Re: The National Youth Council a Mirage or a Reality in Kenya!
Date: Thursday, September 24, 2009, 12:22 AM



Your answer lies in the results of the discussions this guys had in parliament. I wouldn't ask whether the youth council thing is a mirage, I would instead be asking whether policy makers have internalized the concept of NYC.


Kindly find attached the Hansard for 27th August 2009 for the proceedings on the motion for the passing of the second reading. Refer to pages 32-48 for the discussion. I thought the discussions were quite positive to the extent that the politicians themselves were fronting grass root elections for the council however they were equally shall with a lot of people generalizing the council with other matters pertaining to youth e.g boda boda, cleaning up Nairobi River and staff. I like the direction the discussions took though. At least we are assured of elections.


Mungatana was however disappointing…! Read and you will see what I mean…..



From: [] On Behalf Of Emmanuel Dennis
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2009 9:05 PM
To: nyciv
Subject: NYC The National Youth Council a Mirage or a Reality in Kenya!


The National Youth Council a Mirage or a Reality in Kenya!

 Emmanuel Dennis

 September 23rd 2009

I was following the discussions around the national Youth Council bill in parliament and the turn of events left me wondering how on earth are we going to protect and promote the values of our young generation. This thought has left me wondering for the longest time. I am confused and I need some help here. 

 The National Youth Council should be  an independent oversight body that ensures all young people in Kenya are given the opportunities to excel. Politicians are however trying as much to overtake the process and make it work for themselves and their short term political interests. I was researching on the developments in Singapore, a country that overtook Kenya in its economic development a few years ago and has continued to prosper in all fields as Kenya walks back into history of the yester years. I made a few discoveries, may be we have a few lessons to learn from Singapore in creating a path for our own council here in Kenya: 

 The National Youth Council (NYC), a division of the People's Association, was set up by the Singapore government on 1 November 1989 as the national co-coordinating body for youth affairs in Singapore.

Mr Teo Ser Luck, Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Community Development, Youth and Sports and Transport is the Chairman of the National Youth Council. The Council comprises members from various government ministries, youth organizations, academic institutions, voluntary welfare organizations, the media and private sector organizations.

 It is the Advocate, Connector and Enabler for Youth. Together with other partners, the council develops a vibrant and supportive environment for youth who are inspired to dream and committed to action.

The National Youth Council:

(a) Advocates active youth citizenry - engagement, leadership and voice for issues - through programming, resources, funding and recognition. 

(b) Connects the youth sector for increased youth outreach, through creating opportunities and access, both local and overseas. 

(c) Enables the development of youth and the youth sector, through training and capacity building. 

NYC is the administering body for the Singapore Youth Award, Outstanding Youth in Education Award, and is the liaison body with ASEAN and international organizations on youth development.

 We are closing in slowly on the year and the bill is scheduled for the second reading in parliament sometimes this year. We still have an opportunity to salvage the situation and make recommendations at the committee stage. But for sure we have a few lessons to learn from. But the question is

 Are we going to save the situation from the hungry politicians that have characterized our political scene?

 On the other hand, the Youth Enterprise and Development Fund Board is supposed to be replaced by the end of this year. My question to the youth is have we made recommendations on what we need the board to look like? Or are we waiting until they appoint a board with retirees then we begin to wine and complain about it once the executive decisions have been made?

 Let us step up our quest to make our voices heard.



Emmanuel Dennis Ngongo
P.O. Box 8799 - 00200
Nairobi Kenya
Cell: +254 722619005



Emmanuel Dennis Ngongo
P.O. Box 8799 - 00200
Nairobi Kenya
Cell: +254 722619005

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