DEVELOPMENT AND SOCIAL CHANGE STRATEGIES IN KENYA IN THE 21ST CENTURY
Strategy is a high level plan to achieve one or more goals under conditions of uncertainty. Strategy is important because the resources available to achieve these goals are usually limited. Strategy is also about attaining and maintaining a position of advantage over adversaries through the successive exploitation of known or emergent possibilities rather than committing to any specific fixed plan designed at the outset. Henry Mintzberg from McGill University defined strategy as “a pattern in a stream of decisions” to contrast with a view of strategy as planning while Max McKeown (2011) argues that “strategy is about shaping the future” and is the human attempt to get to “desirable ends with available means”. Development means a progression from a simpler or lower to a more advanced, mature, or complex form or stage. It is also defined as the gradual advancement or growth through a series of progressive changes. Development is a process, not a level. It is a path to achieve certain goals.
In the 21st century Kenyans have come up with different strategies to advocate for development and social change. These strategies are mostly based on economic issue, political issue, and social issues those which are affecting the development and growth of our country. These strategies are aiming at transforming Kenya into a newly industrialized middle income country providing a high quality life to all its citizens. For these development to be achieved thre have to be an all inclusive and participartory stakeholders and a consultive process involving Kenyan from all parts of the country. Kenyans are also willing to from suggestions by some of the leading local and international experts on the newly industrialized countries around the world have made the leap from poverty to widely spread prosperity and equity.
Every strategy has been developed to address issues lying across them e.g. economic strategy aims to improve the prosperity of all Kenyans through an economic development programme covering all the regions in Kenya. Social strategy seeks to build a just and cohesive society with social equity in clean and secure environment. Political strategy aims to realize a democratic political system founded on issue based politics that respect the rule of law and protect the rights and freedom of every individual. Kenyans in the 21st century are advocating for a consultive approach in its development involving as many ordinary Kenyans and stakeholders as possible i.e. public service, private sector, civil society, media and non government organization. The importance of consultations is to provide in-depth understanding of countries development problems and necessary strategies to achieve development. Detailed analysis is carried under the consultative approach in order to come up with the strategies capable of resolving the social and political problems that face Kenyans today. Findings In every category of the strategy Kenyans have come up with ways to address the problem found in that particular category.
The Social Strategy Kenya’s journey towards prosperity also involves the building of a just and cohesive society, enjoying equitable social development in a clean and secure environment. This quest is the basis of transformation of the problems found in the category of social strategy, I .e. Education and Training; Health; Water and Sanitation; the Environment; Housing and Urbanization; as well as in Gender, Youth, Sports and Culture; and also in terms of promoting equity and poverty reduction across the entire Kenyan society. It also makes special provisions for Kenyans with various disabilities and previously marginalized communities. Education and Training
Under education and training Kenya will provide a globally competitive quality education, training and research for development. The overall goal for 21st century is to reduce illiteracy by increasing access to education, improving the transition rate from primary to secondary schools, and raising the quality and relevance of education. The Health Sector
To improve the overall livelihoods of Kenyans, the country aims to provide an efficient and high quality health care system with the best standards. This will reduce health inequalities and improve key areas where Kenya is lagging, especially in lowering infant and maternal mortality. Specific strategies will involve: provision of a robust health infrastructure network; improving the quality of health service delivery to the highest standards and promotion of partnerships with the private sector. Water and Sanitation
Kenya is a water scarce country. The country therefore aims to conserve water sources and start new ways of harvesting and using rain and underground water. The 21st century has a vision for Water and Sanitation is to ensure that improved water and sanitation are available and accessible to all. The goal to increase both access to safe water and sanitation in both rural and urban areas beyond present levels The Environment
Kenya aims to be a nation living in a clean, secure and sustainable environment. Specific strategies will involve: promoting environmental conservation for better support to the economic pillar, improving pollution and waste management through the design and application of economic incentives; and the commissioning of public-private partnerships for improved efficiency in water and sanitation delivery. Housing and Urbanization
The 2030 vision for housing and urbanization is an adequately and decently housed nation in sustainable all inclusive environment. The goal for 2012 is to increase the annual production of housing units from the current 35,000 annually to over 200,000. Kenya’s cities and towns are poorly planned. There is an acute need therefore for an effective capacity for regional and urban development planning. In addition, there will be better development of and access to affordable and adequate housing; enhanced access to adequate finance for developers and buyers, and pursue targeted key reforms to unlock the potential of the housing sector. 6. Gender, Youth and Vulnerable Groups
The 2030 vision for gender, youth and vulnerable groups is gender equity, improved livelihoods for vulnerable groups, and a responsible, globally competitive and prosperous youth. The goal for 2012 is to increase opportunities all-round among women, youth and all disadvantaged groups. 7. Equity and Poverty Elimination
The 2030 goal for Equity and poverty elimination is to reduce the number of people living in poverty to a tiny proportion of the total population. Kenya will aim at a society that guarantees equality of opportunity in accessing public services and providing income generating activities as widely as possible. That will be achieved by placing the citizens at a level of income sufficient to cater for basic requirements of a healthy, productive life. 8. Science, Technology and Innovation (STI)
Vision 2030 will be based on the creation of international competitiveness through more efficient productivity at the firm and household level, with government support. However, all the strategies and flagship projects will exploit knowledge in science, technology and innovation (STI) in order to function more efficiently, improve social welfare, and also promote democratic governance. STI can and will be applied in all the lead sectors. The education and training curricula in the country will, therefore, be modified to ensure that the creation, adoption, adaptation and usage of knowledge become part of formal instruction.
The Kenyan economy, East Africa’s largest, has experienced considerable growth in the past few years, driven by several key factors. The country enjoys some particular advantages: a reasonably well-educated labour force, a vital port that serves as an entry point for goods destined for countries in the East African and Central Africa interior, abundant wildlife and kilometers of attractive coastline and above all, a government that is committed to implementing business reforms. This strategy seeks to improve the prosperity of all regions of the country and all Kenyans by achieving a 10% Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate by 2012(vision 2030). To achieve this target, Kenya is continuing with the tradition of macro-economic stability that has been established since 2002.
It is also addressing other key constraints, notably, a low savings to GDP ratio, which can be alleviated by drawing in more remittances from Kenyans abroad, as well as increased foreign investment and overseas development assistance The country is continuing with the governance and institutional reforms necessary to accelerate economic growth. Others critical problems being addressed include poor infrastructure and high energy costs. The five key sectors described below are being given priority as the key growth drivers for achievement of the economic vision: * Tourism
* Increasing value in agriculture
* A better and more inclusive wholesale and retail trade sector * Manufacturing for the regional market
* Financial services
This sector aims to be one of the top ten long- haul tourist destination in the world. To achieve this it has put ahead some strategies as their guideline that is offering a high end, diverse and distinctive visitor experience, achieving high tourist revenue by improving facilities in all underutilized parks, creating new high value niche product and investing in new conference facilities to boost business tourism Agriculture
This aims to promote an innovative, commercially- oriented and modern agricultural sector. This will be accomplished through transforming key institution in agricultural and livestock to promote agricultural growth, increasing productivity of crop and livestock, introducing more irrigable areas in arid and semi- arid areas for both crops and livestock. It also aim sat adding value to our firm and live stock products before they reach local and international market (vision 2030)
Whole sale and retail market
Aims to raise earnings by giving our large informal sector opportunities to transform itself into a part of a formal sector that is efficient, multi tiered, diversified in product range and innovative. This will be raised through training and credit, improving efficiency by reducing the number of players between the producer and the consumer (vision 2030) Manufacturing
It aims to have a robust, diversified and competitive manufacturing sector. This will be achieved through the implementation of the following restricting key local industries that use raw materials but are currently uncompetitive, exploiting opportunities in value addition to agricultural product.
The Political Pillar
This aims to realize a democratic political system founded on issue-based politics that respects the rule of law, and protects the rights and freedoms of every individual in Kenyan society. It hopes to transform Kenya into a state in which equality is entrenched, irrespective of one’s race, ethnicity, religion, gender or socio-economic status; a nation that respects and harnesses the diversity of its peoples’ values, traditions and aspirations for the benefit of all its citizens. The political pillar vision for 2030 is “a democratic political system that is issue-based, people-centered, result-oriented and accountable to the public.” An issue-based system is one in which political differences are about means to meet the widest public interest.
“People-centered” goals refer to the system’s responsiveness to the needs and rights of citizens, whose participation in all public policies and resource allocation processes is both fully appreciated and facilitated. A result-oriented system is stable, predictable and whose performance is based on measurable outcomes. An accountable system is one that is open and transparent and one that permits free flow of information. This vision is expected to guarantee Kenya’s attainment of the specific goals outlined under Vision 2030’s economic and social pillars To meet objectives outlined in the economic and social pillars, Kenya’s national governance system is being transformed and reformed to acquire high-level executive capability consistent with a rapidly industrializing country. The country is adopting a democratic decentralization process with substantial devolution in policy-making, public resource management and revenue sharing through devolved funds. This has been achieved through a delivery of a new constitutional dispensation which came in effect in August 2010. Transformation within Kenya’s political governance system under Vision 2030 is expected to take place across six strategic initiatives, whose overarching visions, goals and specific strategies for 2012 are as follows: * Rule of law
* Electoral and political processes
* Democracy and public service delivery
* Transparency and accountability
* Security, peace building, and conflict management
Rule of law
Under the rule of law the vision 2030 is adherence to the rule of law is as applicable to a modern market based economy in a human right respecting state. A lighting the national policy and legal framework with the need of a market based economy, national human right and gender equality commitment. Increasing access and quality of service available to the public and reducing barriers of justice. Democracy and public service delivery
People centered and political engaged open society, pursuing, constitutional and legal reforms necessary to dissolve to more resources and responsibility to local governance institution. Encouraging formal and informal civil education and action programmes, promoting open engagement between government and civil society as well as the free flow of information. Transparency and accountability
Transparent, accountability, ethical and result oriented government institution strengthening the legal framework for ant- corruption, ethics and integrity. Promoting result based management within the public service, introducing civilian oversight around key legal justice and security, strengthening government legislative oversight capacity. Security
Security of all persons and property throughout the republic, Promoting public- private cooperation and community involvement for improved safety and security, Deeping policy legal and institutional reforms for improved enforcement of law and order, Promoting national and international dialogue in order to build harmony among ethnic, racial and other groups. Electoral and political process
Seeks to cultivate genuinely competitive and issue based politics introducing rules and regulations covering political policies, enhancing the legal and regulatory framework covering electrical process, conducting civil education programmers to widen knowledge and participation among citizens leading to
an informed active citizens.
For development and social change to occur Kenyans in the 21st century Kenyans should evaluate the pre and post development and analyze the strategies they want to put across and see whether they will be of any impact or they will be able to serve them effectively. There should be an integration of all strategies for sustainable development to occur. That is they should put value both in economic, social and political strategies. Commitment is expected for both the government and civil society, international, local and personal positive relationships are also major contributors to sustainable development in the 21st century. Mission, vision, goals and objectives should be successfully laid, well defined and achievable.
Vision 2030 document
The national broad strategy
Vision 2030 flagship project