The determinants of Kenya’s National Security policy since independence
Kenya has faced and continues to face numerous security challenges that appear to be on the increase. This study examines the determinants of Kenya’s national security policy since independence. The scope covers a historical background of the main issues that influence Kenya’s security, the national security policy formulation process and an assessment of the impact of the various national security policy choices. The study has been guided by three research questions namely; 1) What are the factors that have influenced Kenya’s national security policy since independence? 2) What constitute threat to Kenya’s national security and 3) How has Kenya responded to these threats and with what results? Primary data was collected from oral interviews and discussions with key government officials involved in security policy formulation and conduct. Secondary data was sourced from relevant publications and media reports. The study tested two hypotheses namely; that the determinants of Kenya’s national security policy are not aligned fully with the threats to national security and secondly that Kenya’s national security policy has been reactive rather than proactive. The study found out that Kenya’s national security policy formulation is largely state-centric and hence ignores non state-centric threats, which receive less emphasis in the security policy formulation process and this may be a contributing factor to the existing and continued insecurity in the country. Secondly, it found out that Kenya’s national security policy has been to a large extent reactive rather than proactive. The study recommends a more inclusive structured process of national security policy formulation based on the broadened scope of security definition.