Negotiating the Space of Youths amid Growing Insecurities: Lessons from Tanzania and Kenya
Keywords:youth, violence, Tanzania, Kenya
Today, the dominant discourse on violence and the youth is that the youth are either the victims or the perpetrators of violence. This discourse has led to the isolation of the youth and to the failure to tap the potential of the youth in order to address violence. Drawing on a qualitative research study done in Kenya and Tanzania, this article, however, disputes the dominant discourse that depicts youths as perpetrators of violence. The article maintains that while the youth could be trapped in conflict situations as victims, their help could be harnessed to find a positive solution to growing insecurities. In Tanzania, the participation of boda-boda (motorcycle) drivers in community security programmes has helped to curb violent incidents. In Kenya, self-help groups of youths are assisting in gradually defusing violent extremism among the youth. The article contributes to an understanding of the dividends in getting the youth’s help in defusing violent conflicts.
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