Building a Culture of Peace in Kenya
NAIROBI, May 3 (BERNAMA-NNN- KBC) — Eighty per cent of Kenya’s 47 newly created counties are at a risk of violence if elections were held today, according to a new survey released by the Constitution and Reform Education Consortium (CRECO), which has also identified counties in North Eastern, Upper Eastern, Coast, Nairobi and some parts of Rift Valley Provinces as the most conflict prone.
The Consortium’s Acting Programme Co-ordinator, Regina Opondo, cites among other factors, political, security, economic, legal, social and cultural and environmental dimensions as factors which can trigger the conflicts.
Speaking during the launch of the report entitled “‘Building a Culture of Peace in Kenya” here Wednesday, Opondo said the ongoing process of delineating constituency boundaries was also emerging as a conflict accelerator.
She said there was need for state institutions to manage the conflict situation by detecting it early. “The areas that were worst-affected by post election violence (after the Dec 27 2007 general election) merit closer scrutiny during the pre-election period, largely due to the unsettled or unresolved deep-seated grievances,” she added.
The impact of the indictment of the four Kenyans (by the International Criminal Court at The Hague for their alleged involvement in post-election violence) should also provide more justification for monitoring of the situation, especially with the respect to possible treatment of communities perceived as victims of the 2007-2008 PEV (post-election violence.”
Opondo further urged the Commission on Revenue Allocation to ensure equal distribution of resources so that some communities did not feel marginalize. Civil society groups were also asked to be at the forefront in advocating for national cohesion and peace.
“It is important that the State, through the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC), Judiciary, the KPF, and also the National Intelligence Service (NIS) and other relevant institutions, undertake their respective mandates and ensuring that there are pro-active approaches (including of early warning systems) to ensure that conflict in these counties is managed and is not allowed to escalate as it happened in the PEV.”
“Further, all State organs, particularly Parliament’s Budget Committee and the CRA ensure that National and County budgets takes cognizance of past and present marginalization so that some communities do not feel marginalized; in the spirit of the new Constitution.”
Embu, Machakos, Vihiga and Siaya were ranked to be at lowest risk in conflict.
Kitui, Makueni, Nyeri, Taita Taveta, Homabay, Tharaka Nithi, Busia, Elgeyo Marakwet, Samburu, Meru, Kisii, Kaiado, Muranga, Lamu, Kericho, Nandi, Nyandarua, Baringo and Kakamega as Moderate conflict risks.
Marsabit, Isiolo, Mandera, Wajir, Narok, Garissa, Tana River, Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi, Nairobi, Trans Nzoia, Nyamira, Migori, Bomet, Kiambu, Uasin Gishu, Turkana, West Pokot, Laikipia, Nakuru, Kisumu, Bungoma and Kirinyaga as high conflict risks.
The survey covers all the 47 counties which were envisioned by the 2010 Constitution of Kenya as the units along which devolved government would be created.