Abdishakur Abdi

Time to Empower and Engage Youth on CVE in the Horn of Africa,


Contemporary CVE programming while emphasizing poverty reduction, employment creation, counter-messaging and rehabilitation and re-education, has not completely ruled out relying on force. During the designing and CVE programming the voices of the grassroots are not heard by the policy makers as well as the implementing organizations. To defeat violent extremism, a paradigm shift is necessary which entails a focus not on the  symptoms but the ‘virus’ itself. Terrorism itself is not an ideology but a tactic used by a group with motive and agenda. It is a complex challenge deserving a complex and variegated set of response.

Tackling violent extremism requires a comprehensive and dynamic grasp of the process or processes associated that give rise to it, which would then point to the most appropriate solution. Youth empowerment and engagement is crucial because it will enhance participation and involve one of the most vulnerable groups susceptible to violent extremism. Our youth will never be safe as long as they are not well informed, not empowered and not engaged in CVE activities in their localities because they are far more susceptible to radicalization than adults.