Thursday, September 8, 2011

Weekly Sneak: Young at Heart

Ah, youth. So much to say. But if we keep it on the political level, I have to admit to a deep suspicion about any initiatives that target youth, especially in Tanzania. So in order to check my thoughts, I asked one of my colleagues about this whole youth-focus thing that politicians, the government and civil society are selling lately. We discussed why buy-in has been low: youth, like anybody else, know when they are being used for purposes outside of their own interests. So how do youth organize, what do they do? Tons of stuff, actually. And some institutions do get their youth-engagement right. They tend to be the ones that are, surprise surprise, founded and run by... youths.

Which might explain why most of them are in the entertainment or ICT sectors and not so much in, say, accounting ;) Anyways, having confirmed my suspicions by consulting all of one "youth" this week's article in The East African is centered around a suggestion. What would happen if we respected "youth" as regular, capable people and got out of their way. What if we stop telling them what their interest is and respect their choices so long as they are legal. What if we just get out of the way. That's it.


  1. Hmmm, the linked article seems to be hinting more at a postponement rather than a total abandonment of the enterprise.

    I think a federation is possible, but only if they do the groundwork to prepare the people and build the institutions which would help it function beforehand.

    The results of that poll are very interesting although it does appear to be from 2004, I wonder if opinion has changed and whether there is a difference of opinion young vs old, urban vs rural, middle class vs working class etc

    I am very curious if the monetary union will go ahead and how it will succeed, at least all 3 currencies are already called "Shilingi" :-)

    Lastly, Aidan linked to a VERY interesting article by Mamdani which I think describes very clearly some of the challenges esp. on land issues which is a big concern to a lot of TZs:

  2. Hmmm, seem previous post went to the wrong "department"! Let me post over there. Sadly I have nothing intelligent to comment on the issue of youth empowerment, but EAC on the other hand is one of my passions :-)


No biting, spitting, trolling or ugly insults- only pretty ones allowed.

A little birdie told me...

Follow MikocheniReport on Twitter