President William Ruto has said the Government is investing in the monetization of talents to bolster entrepreneurship, innovation and economic growth.
The President said the Government is keen on the conversion of passions into livelihoods, creating an empowered and self-reliant generation.
He cited the Talanta Hela which seeks to encourage youth to pursue their artistic and sporting goals.
“The Talanta Hela Initiative is a true Bottom-Up program; focused on empowerment, the creation of opportunities and the transformation of sports, young affairs and the arts,” he said.
The President made the remarks during the official opening of the Talanta Plaza in Nairobi in the company of Sports Cabinet Secretary Ababu Namwamba.
The building will be the new home of the Ministry of Youth Affairs, the Arts and Sports.
“This project reflects our commitment to sports, youth and the arts and is now the nerve center of the Talanta Hela Initiative, our flagship program to monetize talent in our country,” he said.
President Ruto said the Government is committed to providing the necessary infrastructure to foster the development of sports in the country.
He said the Government is upgrading the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani, Nyayo National Stadium and the Kipchoge Keino Stadium, in Eldoret.
“These works will boost our bid to co-host the 2027 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) with Uganda and Tanzania,” he said.
President Ruto announced today the launch of the Presidential Innovation Challenge, aimed at fostering innovation and supporting startups.
He said this initiative is set to begin this month and will reach its climax during the Commonwealth Innovation Week, where outstanding innovations and top startups will be recognized.
He called on Affirmative Action Funds: Hustler Fund, Youth Enterprise Development Fund (YEDF), Women Enterprise Fund (WEF), Uwezo Fund and National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF) to develop tailor-made facilities targeting youth in the Blue, Green and Orange economy spaces.
“This will help in the alleviation of key challenges that face youth in the country including high levels of inactivity, unemployment and underemployment, early and unintended pregnancies, crime, alcoholism, drugs use and substance abuse among others,” he said.
Mr Ababu recognised the Kenyan athletics team that represented Kenya in the World Athletics Championships in Budapest.
He said the Government has revamped the cash reward for athletes who win medals representing the country.
“We have also settled all outstanding dues owed to our athletes going back over 10 years,” he said.
Earlier, President Ruto attended the Africa Youth Climate Assembly 2023 at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC), Nairobi ahead of next week’s Africa Climate Summit.
The President asked African youth to play a leading role in climate change action.
He said the youth are the greatest stakeholders in climate change action saying they are the custodians of the future.
He noted that sidelining the youth would be an exercise in futility.
“I ask you, young people from our continent to take action, let us initiate this transformative shift together,” he said.
The President stated that Africa is taking a leadership role in climate change action by transitioning from a victim to a solution provider.
“We are going to change our approach. We are going to be armed with proposals, ideas and assets and find our way to the table,” he said.
President Ruto called on African states to take advantage of climate action to create opportunities for the youth.
The President noted that Africa’s abundance of resources in renewable energy positions the continent to benefit from climate action.
He explained these renewable energy resources will create opportunities for job creation, investment and innovation.
“Africa has the capacity to expand its economy and prosperity while avoiding worsening the climate situation and offering climate-smart solutions,” he said