Uhuru promises to create 1.3 million jobs if re-elected

Job creation is back on the top priority for the ruling coalition that is now promising to create 1.3 million jobs every year.

In his party's manifesto released yesterday, President Uhuru Kenyatta said if re-elected, his government will work with devolved governments to establish at least one industry in every county.

"We commit to creating at least 6.5 million jobs over five years to ensure our people, particularly our youth, can secure and maintain good jobs that enable them to enjoy a decent life. We will concentrate investments in the sectors that are growth-oriented and job creating," President Kenyatta said.

In his re-election manifesto, which still has similarities with the previous one that is yet to be fully implemented, in his first term, Uhuru said he expanded the youth empowerment programme by providing low interest loans to youth-owned enterprises to enable them grow their businesses.

President Kenyatta said his government increased the number of youth recruited through the National Youth Service (NYS) from 4,000 in 2013 to 37,005 in 2016. The job promise is, however, set to face a lot of criticism given that Jubilee rode on a similar promise to capture the youths to ascend to power in 2013.

The President said in his first term, employment increased by 5.9 per cent annually creating an estimated 800,000 jobs every year. [Paul Wafula]