As I write this, there’s still so much pain in my heart. My name is Fredrick Omondi Okello and I want make the world better through science and philanthropy. I have dedicated most of my adult life to fulfil these two passions. Unlike most people who carry the name philanthropist with them, I am not rich or famous. Just driven by an intrinsic will to make things better for the less fortunate even though I am forced into that same category by poor governance and greedy politicians.As I write this, there’s still so much pain in my heart. Unlike most people who carry the name philanthropist, I am not rich or famous. Just driven by an intrinsic will to make things better for the less fortunate. Click To Tweet
Yes, my baby was snatched right out of my hands by the government. In 2018, I came up with the idea to solve joblessness among youth. I called her, Kazi Mtaani initiative.
I set it up as a non-for profit peer-peer exchange group where people share jobs, work opportunities, scholarships, bursaries and social development programmes from reputable organisations that we frequently receive.
Just recently, the government just started the same initiative and named it exactly the same as I did. They are now brandishing it as a Presidency led initiative.
Funny enough, my baby was born in response to failed government projects that are heavily funded but never reach the grassroots to solve unemployment in Kenya.
Case in point: Uwezo Fund Scandal, Youth Fund Scandal, NYS Scandal, Kazi Kwa Vijana Scandal… etc.What do you do when you give birth to a baby only for the government to snatch it just after it starts walking? Click To Tweet
In spite of continued failure, the government still launches new projects because the international community blindly funds the corrupt at the top instead of directly reaching out to the community.
The most recent corruption scandals expose the government’s unpreparedness to address the problem of youth unemployment, further putting into question its commitment and capability to tackle joblessness. I mean, who cursed programmes meant to help vulnerable youth?
Anyway, after making noise about all this with fellow Kenyans on Twitter, which fell on deaf ears, I decided to create a solution. I vied for a political seat as an MCA – Uhuru Kariobangi South Ward aspirant with Ukweli Party in 2017 and my heart was still with the people. I did an in-depth research and analysis on the causes of failures in the implementation of projects in Kenya.In spite of continued failure, the government still launches new projects because the international community blindly funds the corrupt at the top instead of directly reaching out to the community. Click To Tweet
An Analysis of the Causes of Failures in the Implementation of Projects in Kenya:
- Nepotism: Unqualified people who lack experience and training are given responsibility over projects they know nothing about.
- Corruption: Money issued is stolen and what is left is too little so the project manages misuses it leading to many stalled to incomplete or failed government projects in Kenya.
- Insufficient Research: Projects are launched for PR without a defined scope which causes assumptions, which is a main reason behind incomplete projects in Kenya.
- Lack of Involvement of the Target Group: When the people meant to benefit from the project are left out throughout the whole implementation process always leads to project failure.
- Unprofessionalism: Lack of effective communication at all levels and use of Jua kali methods and strategies which end up increasing the risk of failure.
This was meant to be the foundation of Kazi Mtaani initiative. I did not have the money or connections to share this with the whole country but had only one strategy: Avoid the 5 problems above and Kazi Mtaani will make a significant impact.
So, without wasting any time, I launched Kazi Mtaani Initiative and shared it with my personal contacts and from there it grew organically. It was open. Anyone could join the forum via the kazi mtaani Facebook page, Twitter page, telegram channel or WhatsApp.
Being a lover of partnerships, I spent the better part of the next month’s discussing progressive changes that youth within Nairobi County and KENYA as a whole consider vital, for them to have a better social and economic output.Lack of Involvement of the Target Group: When the people meant to benefit from the project are left out throughout the whole implementation process always leads to project failure. Click To Tweet
Perhaps one of the major highlight at the time was meeting a delegation of 3 young ladies, who secured jobs through my Kazi Mtaani platform forum.
It was deeply encouraging to know that our impact within our society is not just talked about but actually works in providing Jobs for the Youth Across Kenya.
The growth and success of Kazi Mtaani Initiative was even featured in the dailies with encouraged me further to go on even without funds.
Flash forward to 2020, a few days back and yes… I open the papers and the government has plagiarised all my work. What was meant to be a National Hygiene Programme is now branded Kazi Mtaani and National Hygiene Programme (N.H.P.). Looking at my list above on why government programs fail, and you can see that they clearly didn’t do their research. If they did, they would probably beef up existing solutions instead of duplicating efforts.If the government did adequate research before launching projects, they would probably beef up existing solutions by citizens instead of duplicating efforts and creating unnecessary competition. Click To Tweet
The initiative – Kazi Mtaani and National Hygiene Programme (N.H.P.) was announced by President Uhuru Kenyatta on April 25 as one of the economic stimulus measures for informal settlements in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kiambu, Kisumu, Nakuru, Kilifi, Mandera and Kwale against the coronavirus pandemic.
First phase of Kazi Mtaani was launched last week. It will involve the jobless in urban hygiene and sanitation works in 23 informal settlements countrywide.
Kazi Mtaani is a labour-intensive public works programme set out to provide immediate job opportunities for more than 26,000 Kenyans in informal settlements.
The target group is engaged in activities like garbage collection, bush clearing and unclogging of drainage. The beneficiaries earn daily wages payable at least twice a week through mobile money transfers.
Where’s the Problem?
Here is my first concern:
There are many smalls scale local traders who’ve made a living through garage collecting. The government is simply cutting them off by taking over their main hustle just like a bully.
Some of them have even invested in small vans and have recorded some success because they personally know the youth who they employ and have lived together so they understand each other’s struggles.There are many smalls scale local traders who’ve made a living through garage collecting in the slums. The government is simply cutting them off by taking over their main hustle without alternatives. Click To Tweet
My Second concern:
At least 5000 families in Kariobangi residents have been left homeless in the middle of a worldwide pandemic as their houses were demolished. Almost the same time, the government was launching the stolen Kazi Mtaani Initiative.
If indeed you care about people in the Mtaa, why let this happen to them? Residents said they woke up on Monday morning to find their homes being brought down without any prior notice. It is alleged that the land had been sold illegally.At least 5000 families in Kariobangi residents have been left homeless in the middle of a worldwide pandemic as their houses were demolished. Click To Tweet
I wouldn’t be this bitter if the Government actually did what they promise, but Feel like even with the billions of shillings that will be poured into my project, they may never genuinely impact people’s lives like I did with only passion and hear for people.
Pick a leader who will keep jobs in your country by offering companies incentives to hire only within their borders, not one who allows corporations to outsource jobs for cheaper labour when there is a national employment crisis.