Youths in Mombasa County want the national government to craft a law in a bid to regulate online content users to counter violent extremism.
According to the youths, the online platform is a key driver to youths engaging in violent extremism.
Speaking to Jumuiya News in Mombasa on Wednesday, Joseph Zoka, youth with a disability at Bombolulu says most of the youths are tech-savvy and can access any content from online sources.
He also cites idleness as a major driver to youths engaging in Violent Extremism.
“It is high time the government comes in and develop a law to regulate all social media platforms. This involves who (age factor) to access the content,” he noted.
Zoka called on youths to engage in income-generating activities to avoid joining juvenile gangs.
The father of two, now a peer educator and a businessman, says he holds talks on Violent Extremism to his age mates to discourage them from joining criminal gangs.
He adds that most of his age mates have no form of any economic activity but always sit at a strategic place famously known as maskani.
Motivational talks, significant
At the same time, Patience Mwangeka, a peace champion says,” The government should come up with special youth empowerment programs and motivational talks to avoid youths engaging in drug and substance abuse. Motivational talks play a pivotal role in bringing up a morally upright society,”
She asked parents to ensure their children grow up in a morally accepted society.
“It is the responsibility of parents to bring up morally upright children. Let us parents serve as good examples,” she noted.
She, however, cites idleness and political intolerance as key drivers to violent extremism.
“Through my effort as a peace champion, I have managed to assist four boys’ reform. As I speak now the boys have reformed and 3 of them are doing business while one is in college, said Mwangeka.
Sports remedy to violent extremism
Meanwhile, Omar Said, Youth Development Initiative Coach, wants the national government to invest in sports in a bid to eradicate cases of violent extremism and the rise of criminal gangs.
Omar adds that should the government fail to contain crime; a new breed of criminals will sprout in the next two years.
He further asked donors and well-wishers to come on board and provide sporting kits and other essentials.
“Sports are a remedy for violent extremism and radicalization. Drug addicts and users are on the rise and they should be contained,” said the coach.
The YDI Coach states that he has successfully organised soccer tournaments since 2013 adding that he does it during the April August and December holidays.
“It is my gift. In this tournament I target school-going children,” said Omar.
He says he is currently organising a soccer tournament dubbed ‘Soweto County Football Tournament bringing close to 650 children on board.
The soccer coach however lashed out at a local politician (name withheld) on claims of giving false promises.
“This politician promised 2 balls for the 20 teams which had participated in the tournament. I do not want to hear anything about politicians,” said the Coach.
He says before and after a tournament he holds life skills talk as a way of motivating and imparting general knowledge to the players.