Increasingly, elders in Northern Kenya play a considerable role in determining who gets elected for political offices, especially county offices. However, how do traditional/cultural institutions interact with the new formal political institutions? The interaction between these institutions is not always unidirectional, but they mutually influence each other. Do women have a role since most of the elders are male?
Pre-independence, Kenya's Northern Frontier Districts fought to be part of Somalia during Shifta War or Gaf Daba (1963–1967). While newly independent Kenya won against the "Shifta," this experience inaugurated the securitization of the relationship between the Kenyan authorities, the region, and the people. As a result, the region experienced a series of massacres- the Wagala (1984), Bagala (1998), and Malka Mari (1982). The advent of the war on terror saw the community collectively labeled as terrorists. As a result of such labeling, accessing state services, including the National Identity Card, passports, etc, has become difficult for people from the region.
The Constitution of Kenya, in Article 53 (1) (b) states that every child has a right to free and compulsory basic education, and Article 55 (a) the State shall take measures, including affirmative action programs, to ensure that the youth access relevant education and training. Since Kenya’s independence, northern Kenya in arid Kenya has continued to exhibit extensively lower access, participation, completion, and achievement rates. But the increasing insecurity, including from Al Shabaab, has worsened educational outcomes in Northern Kenya. The Elephant in conversation with Fatuma Ali Saman, a Kenyan educationist and women's rights campaigner.
The Community Land Act, No. 27 of 2016 (the Act) came into force on 21 September 2016. The Act gives effect to Article 63 of the Constitution of Kenya, 2010 (the Constitution) which provides for the classification of land known as community land. While the law is progressive on paper- it enables local communities to register and own their communal lands legally, its application has been slow. The Elephant in conversation with Dr Hussein Wario, Executive Director at the Center for Research and Development in Drylands, Kenya.
Kenya recorded 15 droughts between 1960 and 2016. The 1970s and 80s were described as decades of drought. Six droughts -40 percent, occurred after 2000—a remarkable increase in the frequency and severity of the drought. Northern Kenya has been at the receiving end of the impacts of the drought because their mode of livelihood- pastoralism, is highly dependent on the rain. So far, the response to the drought has been reactionary rather than rounded. The Elephant in conversation with Dr Guyo Malicha Roba, an expert on African pastoralism and livestock value chain.
Pastoralist communities in Northern Kenya have an intimate interaction with climate change. Since pastoralism is intrinsically dependent on climate, the community has developed an adaptive set of mechanisms for dealing with climate change over the years. But state policies have frayed the edges of the community's framework for dealing with climate, leaving them far more vulnerable to the changing climate. The Elephant in conversation with Gregory Akal, a journalist and Climate expert.
Africa has received $1.2-trillion in development assistance since 1990. Even though donors have spent more than $1 000 per person over these 30 years, the average income of sub Saharan Africans has increased by just $350. The continent has very little to show for this money, some of which has been consumed by the donors themselves, much of it by local governments and elites. There must be a better way to address the poverty pandemic. Expensive Poverty is focused on answering the trillion-dollar question: why have decades of spending had such a small impact on improving the lives of the...
Kenya's mainstream media needs to move away from looking at the region through the lens of conflict and drought and present a complete picture of northern Kenya and the people. That will require hiring more people from the area in leadership positions and paying the local correspondent a fair wage. The Elephant in conversation with Osman Mohamed Osman, a PhD student in the Department of Media, Culture and Communication at New York University. His work has been published by The Elephant, Al-Jazeera English, CNN, Quartz, among others.
Devolution in northern Kenya has tremendous potential for transforming the lives and livelihoods of the people in northern Kenya. To realize the full extent of devolution, leaders in northern of Kenya need to embrace accountability, and the national government needs to embrace equity. The Elephant in conversation with Dr Abduba Mollu Ido, governance, management and institutional development specialist with hands-on experience spanning 20 years.
Around a third of Kenyans live in the Arid and Semi-Arid Regions of Kenya, which constitutes 80 % of Kenya's landmass. In Northern Kenya, temperatures have risen 0.34 degrees C (.6 F) per decade since 1985, according to U.S government data. This temperature change is fueling more severe cycles of drought. The drought cycle has been reduced from ten years to five years. But increasingly, that cycle has been reduced to 2-3 years. While the increasing intensity and frequency of drought are predictable, there has not been a commensurate policy response to cushion the predominantly pastoralist community that relies on...
The Bureau of Investigative Journalism and Auddy's investigation starts in 2013, as they meet an attorney who is recruited by BAT in London to spy on the tobacco smugglers within South Africa. Over the next 8 episodes, they explored allegations that British American Tobacco used a network of spies to help damage its rivals.