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NYS Programme Re-Launched in Thika Constituency.

Director General Sam Michuki on Tuesday officially re-launched the Kiandutu National Youth Service (NYS), Youth Empowerment Programme with a call to the 2380 cohorts to take full advantage of the exercise to build a youth economy.

The programme that had previously commenced on 13th Jan 2015 was abruptly halted on 11th September the same year when the NYS was put in the spotlight over the Sh791 million that was allegedly embezzled.

The DG said that leadership changes in the National Youth Service, improvement of financial and fleet management systems as well as upgrading of inventory management were some of the changes effected to safeguard the project.

"We are confident that the measures the government and NYS have taken regarding governance, management and financial systems will ensure total success of the programme and guarantee the empowerment of our youth," said Michuki.

"All cohorts are now registered electronically through a biometric system that helps us keep proper inventory of their payments which will henceforth be channeled via an electric card dubbed Huduma Card," he added.

He said that this time round, the cohorts would be working half day and undergoing some financial management classes so as to prepare them in the running of a business. This lessons would also help them know how to manage and maximise resources, how best to handle them to ensure profitability, minimise losses and expenses and increase market share. This is aimed at assisting them on how to make the right decisions about investing in projects.

He advised them to actively engage in income generating activities with the 30% remittances that the government saved for them through their constituency SACCOs. He also recommended them to engage in small income boosting practices like table-banking which would boost their financial power.

"The government has transferred Sh. 408 million of the savings made in the pilot project all over the 72 constituencies having this programme to fully registered SACCOs with the remaining Sh. 572 million deposited in a KCB account. The 10 SACCOs in Thika have been able to save sh.63million," he said.

Currently, there are 147 operational SACCOs from the pilot phase with the ministry planning on increasing the number to 236 by the end of this month.

The DG added that the government will supplement the cohorts’ savings with affirmative action funds to help create employment for the YEP graduates.

This empowerment programme would help the cohorts to graduate to entrepreneurs who would in turn leave these positions to others who were jobless.

Michuki advised them not to misuse the money they earn through alcohol abuse or it driving a wedge between spouses. He appealed to them to assist those who were slaves to liquor so as to help them get out of the scourge.

He promised all those who were in the previous arrangement that they would be assimilated and will also look into ways of bringing on board those who had recently acquired ID Cards so that as many youth as possible, benefitted from this programme.

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