Effects of peace and reconcilliation efforts in Kenya- a follow up to 2007 post election violence in Mukuru slums, Nairobi
Muyi, Moses N
MetadataShow full item record
Violent conflict is a major human rights, development and social problem world over. There are different forms of violent conflict which includes; territorial wars, interstate and intrastate conflicts, conflicts among individuals that result into lack of development, loss of livelihoods, displacement, loss of employment opportunities and changes in the structure of the economy. When violent conflicts occur in the society, there are various methods applied in solving the conflicts and ensuring that such conflicts do not re-occur. One of the most popular methods of solving these conflicts and ensuring that they do not occur again is in the use of peace and reconciliation. This study is focused on the impacts of peace and reconciliation efforts in Kenya. In Kenya's history, members of different ethnic groups co-existed, traded and intermarried in a mutual relationship between pastoralists and agricultural communities. There have been some conflicts here and there, triggered by old cultural beliefs like cattle rustling, but the events of December 2007after the contested presidential elections between PNU candidate Mwai Kibaki and ODM candidate Raila Odinga, claims that the elections were rigged sparked off the worst politically instigated conflict that forced the intemational community to step in and initiate talks between the rival groups. Most studies focusing on violent conflict touch on the actual physical conflicts and the impacts of the violence on society. There is very limited information regarding the impact of peace and reconciliation efforts. This study will be an assessment of the impact of the peace and reconciliation efforts in ensuring that the communities that raised arms against each other achieve total reconciliation and the once peaceful environment between communities returns. This study has attempted to fill this knowledge gap. The objectives of this study are: to undertake an analysis of the impact of peace and reconciliation efforts in Mukuru slums; to analyze the activities of major actors in reconciliation and peace building efforts in Mukuru slums; to analyze the activities of major actors in bringing back peace and reconciliation among the people of Mukuru slums and to examine the impact of major actors in bringing back peace and reconciliation among the people and to analyze the role of the government of Kenya in bringing back peace and reconciliation to the people of Mukuru slums. Only specific social and political factors were included in the study, some of which include; education level, age of respondents, designation of respondents, length of living in Mukuru slums, gender, effects of the violence on peoples lives and the role of the government of Kenya in bringing back peace and reconciliation. Existing literature on violent conflicts and peace and reconciliation efforts were examined with regard to definition and scope of violent conflicts, society perspectives of peace and reconciliation efforts including efforts by different groups in mitigating violent conflicts. This research is grounded on the macro theory of conflict theory and a micro theory namely frustrationaggression theory. Primary data for the study was obtained using questionnaires and key informant interviews. A total of 140 respondents were interviewed, the findings were analyzed , using a statistical package for social sciences, while content analysis was done for the qualitative data. The findings indicated that peace and reconciliation efforts had a great impact on reducing conflicts in the area as indicated by a mean of 4.8 with a standard deviation of 0.41. The means adapted to promoting peace and reconciliation suited the situation in Mukuru slums. Also the findings established that the change in political situation in Mukuru area and gender of the respondents had no impact on promoting peace and reconciliation. Key recommendations arising from the study includes; the promotion of peace and reconciliation to other parts of the country as this has proved to bear fruits in the case of Mukuru slums. The methods used in promoting peace and reconciliation should be people initiated and not necessarily use of rule of law.