Article by Prisca Pfunye
The lack of enthusiasm by young people to participate in economic development is increasingly growing. Loosely termed economic apathy, not being part of the economic ecosystem is a growing trend in Zimbabwe and beyond.
Youth for innovation trust in partnership with Umahlekisa Comedy Club started conversations about it earlier this year at Luveve Beit Hall through a comedy and poetry show. One of the poets who was part of this initiative who is also a BAA award winner Rachel Ncube (Voko the Poet) sat down with Youth for Innovation Trust to discuss the subject of economic apathy.
Q: How did you feel addressing economic apathy through poetry?
A: It felt great! As a young person I believe everyone in this earth has something to deliver and a part they have to play in order to fill in the gaps in inconsistencies. It came as an achievement to explore things that matter.
Q: How do you think people understand apathy towards economic development?
A: Most of the do not understand economic apathy because they don’t understand the term apathy yet everyone is just tired and is waiting for the economy to get better instead of assisting.
Q: What is the role of young people in addressing economic apathy?
A: We have to talk about it as young people and be proactive in looking for and implementing solutions towards citizen led economic growth. Young people should be innovative and create something out of nothing.
Q: Who are the other players besides young people involved in terms of addressing economic apathy?
A: Everyone who is alive should be involved. Different government institutions need to systematically encourage young people to participate in economic development through them and also monetize their skills.
Q: Do you think the rise in crimes is a result of economic apathy?
A: Yes it is! When there is no money you end up opting for things like involuntary sex work and theft so that you earn a living. It is a quicker solution than penetrating unsafe and closed formal spaces.
Q: What are your last words about this topic?
A: Times are hard and we have good excuses to not be part of the economic ecosystem but hardships faced are stepping stones to the next face.