There is increasing evidence that the number of young people from diverse geographical and cultural backgrounds across Kenya and the world who are becoming members or supporters of various terrorist organizations is growing. This is why radicalization leading to violence is an area of increasing concern. In cases of radicalization, the most significant threat arises when individuals make the decision to act violently based on their beliefs. There are a variety of factors that lead to an individual getting radicalized and eventually turn to violence as a form of communication.
One significant factor is unemployment which has greatly influenced youth vulnerability to religious radicalization in Kenya by a large extent. While the government attempts to create more employment opportunities to the youth by creating jobs and encouraging job creation in the private sector, a platform for development of religious pluralism should also be formed which would provide a forum to inform the public about different religions and for them to discuss relevant issues that affect them on a day to day basis.
Schools should promote critical thinking and expand course offerings that seek to broaden students understanding of other cultures. This does not only involve curriculum activities but also inter school interactions where Christian, Muslim, and even Hindu based schools get to interact on religious and cultural bases.
Mass media should be used to encourage youths and empower them. From a religious standpoint, the media has failed the Kenyan people by overly promoting vanity and increasingly depraved morality standards. Youths need to be offered direction and training to empower them on national and economic issues so as to reduce poverty. Economic prosperity will lead to a more balanced national psyche. There is a need to carry out surveys on the training needs amongst the youth so that appropriate empowerment courses could be availed to them. All the above should be tailored at avoiding the feeling of marginalization and neglect currently being expressed by the youth in the form of violence and revolt.
While there are a lot of factors that lead to vulnerability among the youth and leave them open to foreign and radical influence, remedies and solutions are also plenty and always at hand. Until the society makes a conscious effort to reclaim its seed and plan for the future generations instead of playing social class games, then the future is bleak as elements of radicalization and violent extremism will always abound.