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Barriers to conflict resolution in Africa: Mediating beyond power and ethnicity in the EAC and SADC countries through a Kenyan case study

Author: Terry Rose
Date: 2017
This paper assesses the relevance of ethnicity and power in conflicts occurring in the EAC and SADC regions through a case study of Kenya. It engages with elites’ power contestation and the manner in which power has historically caused violence and instability in Kenya. Further, an account of researches on ethnicity and its inducing of violence is made. Through this, one discovers the importance of ethnicity beyond that of being a channel for the upsurge of violence.
The piece argues for power as the cornerstone of Kenya’s and, through Kenya, Africa’s EAC and SADC conflicts. For, inasmuch as they are relevant, other conflict sources are accounted herewith as manifestations of power. The piece further details how ethnicity should be addressed as a secondary source of conflict. In conclusion, one takes the findings to African mediation processes, and the EAC and SADC regions. The manner in which most countries of the latter regions share commonalities around these two sources of conflict are appreciated, alongside the call for addressing same in order to prevent other African conflicts from occurring or resurfacing.

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