The University of Nairobi hosted the induction of 250 Ajira Digital Program interns from January 27 to 31, 2020.

The induction involved training the interns and imparting in them knowledge and skills to enable them work and earn a decent income online. The interns were also trained on government structure operations and urged to uphold the high values and principles of public service such as accountability, efficiency and transparency as they discharge their duties.

The induction program was graced by top government officials from the Ministry of ICT including Mr. Joe Mucheru, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of ICT, Mr. Jerome Ochieng, Principal Secretary, State Department for ICT & Innovation, the ICT Chief Administrative Secretary, Maureen Mbaka, the Chief Administrative Secretary, Innovation and Youth, Nadia Abdalla, Ms. Esther Koimet, Principal Secretary, State Department of Broadcasting & Telecommunications and the Deputy  Vice Chancellor University of Nairobi, Prof. Julius Ogeng’o among other key partners.

In his opening speech, Mr. Jerome Ochieng noted that formal employment has not been growing proportionately with the demand for jobs. It is in view of this that the government established a broad range of interventions to deal with the growing rate of unemployment with specific attention to the youth. Among the measures taken to provide solution to unemployment is the Ajira Digital Program. The Ajira Digital program aims at introducing young people to on-line work and providing them with necessary tools, training and mentorship to enable the youth to work and earn a decent income online.

In his remarks, Prof. Julius Ogeng’o, the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs said that he was confident that the Ajira initiative driven by the Ministry of Information Communications, Technology, Innovation and Youth Affairs would empower millions of young people to access digital and digitally-enabled job opportunities and position Kenya as a labor destination for multinational companies as well as encourage local companies and the public sector to create digital work.

Dr. Catherine Getao the ICT Chief Executive Officer indicated that the Ministry of ICT had different programs aimed at building the ICT capacity of the youth to enable them secure opportunities in the job market.

The 250 interns who will be posted to different County Information Offices nationwide were reminded that they had been recruited to support the implementation of the Ajira Digital Program and offer technical support while sharing their innovativeness to help the government to deliver the digital economy promise and transform individuals, families and Kenya at large.

It is hoped that the one-year internship program will offer mentorship, networking opportunities and experience to the youth to enable them develop professionally and become employable both in the private and public sector.

The University of Nairobi applauds the deliberate effort by the Government to promote online work and place Kenya as a global freelance capital. The key players that have made the Ajira Digital program successful include the Ministry of ICT, Huawei and Mastercard Foundation.