Kenya: Prof Kobia Advocates for Boy Child Empowerment

20 January 2021

Gender and Youth Affairs Cabinet Secretary Prof Margaret Kobia has called for inclusivity in the empowerment of boys and girls in the society.

Speaking in Chuka town, Tharaka Nithi County yesterday, Prof Kobia said the society has given the girl child a lot of focus forgetting the boys.

She said it's shocking to note that boys as young as 14 years are dropping out of school to engage in small businesses.

"It has been noted that most of the children who have not reported back to school after the long Covid-19 break are boys and most of them have joined the boda boda business," said Prof Kobia.

She said there can never be a balanced society with empowered women and weak men.

The CS noted that it's time the government and other players in the society advocate for inclusivity where girls and boys are given equal attention.

Historically, women have been marginalised socially, economically or politically, especially in Africa where culture gave a lot of value to the boy child.

Affirmative action

The initial government laws and policies borrowed a lot from the culture, which never gave attention to women, but the Kenya 2010 Constitution came up with affirmative action to empower women including the creation of the county women representative positions.

Most of the non-governmental organisations also came up with empowerment programs targeting girls and women forgetting the boys.

Recently, the Ameru Njuri Ncheke Council of Elders also raised concern on the fate of the boy child.

The elders noted that young boys were now engaging in crime including drug abuse, due to lack of guidance by the parents who have concentrated on the girls.

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