Jobs creation, not stipends, top test for aspiring leaders


Long queues of job seekers in their hundreds wait to hand in their documents at County hall on May 26, 2017, as they sought job opportunities. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NMG

At a tender age, a child is able to know about meaningful jobs. Randomly, when I ask Grade One pupils whom they want to become in future, no one says he wants to sell at a roadside food stand, even if their parents do.

They all dream to be pilots, doctors, teachers and journalists — name it.

Surprisingly, if there are vacancies in companies, the micro-business holders along the road also struggle for interviews.

This shows that people do not just want to make little money that will sustain them, they want decent and steady jobs that pay top dollar.

Leaders know that jobs are the heart and soul of a nation, the thing that sustains everyone.

It is a prudent idea for a leader or aspirant to promise monthly stipends; however, this may keep people hallucinating.

Money for taxes

The government does not have the money. People and companies do. Therefore, if they work, they can generate the money and pay taxes.

The leaders should understand that joblessness is the leading driver of national hopelessness. We cannot run away from this: many youth, including graduates, are hopeless. Most are moving to cities to search for greener pastures to no avail.

It is now normal that one should have “connections” or “know somebody” to secure a job even as more than two million graduates get out to join the never-ending list of the unemployed.

Thus, to have peace, wellbeing, and extraordinary advancements, formal jobs should be a priority.

The Gallup chairman Jim Clifton observes that informal jobs, which do not have paycheques and steady work, do create substance and survival, but not real economic energy.

They are held by people who are not miserable but, according to Gallup, suffering their way through life with no hope for a good job.

Therefore, the leadership should master job creation, unlike in the past where traditional leadership thrived in politics, military force, religion, and personal values.

Importantly, the economy thrives when people have good jobs. The GDP and jobs are like the chicken and an egg scenario.

Losing hope

The important metric, GDP, grows when businesses are flourishing and customers are spending; thus, hiring more people.

As we approach general elections, the aspirants should know that meaningful jobs are the in-thing. And good leaders plus their handlers should know that without a doubt.

The most important question to ask now is how to create job opportunities for unemployed Kenyans.

They need to revive the hope of individuals who had lost hope of getting jobs, ending up in bad ways such as theft and putting their lives on the line.

This is one of the ways of ending graft that has penetrated the employment sector where an applicant should pay before being accepted.