The political advocacy of the National Council of Churches of Kenya, 1908-1997
Akattu, Enock Muyonga
MetadataShow full item record
NCCK has been deeply involved in the political democratisation process in Kenya before the reintroduction of political pluralism in 1992. By employing locke's theological argument in ' The Second Treatise of Government', this study set out to investigate the political advocacy of the NCCK since its inception in 1908 to around 1997. The study makes a contribution to our knowledge from a historical perspective of the Christian missionary enterprise. Their involvement in secular protest and the perceptions of Africans on these missions as agencies, which could be used to their advantage in dealing with colonial and post-colonial authorities and in its present form as the NCCK are explored. Among the objectives addressed in this study were to: analyse the factors influencing missionary participation in social issues in the early colonial period; to trace the history of the NCCK and its political activities between 1908 and 1997; to analyse the factors that have made the NCCK to shift focus from set objective s to suit the political environment and; to identifying the extend to which the NCCK participates in the political process of reform and advocacy for change in Kenya. Literature publications on NCCK and other related studies were reviewed with the purpose of establishing the basis of this study. Some of stratified sampling was employed as NCCK officials who had served before and those currently serving, the clergy and the politicians were divided into different stratum. Stratified-purposive sampling was employed to purposively identify about 75 members of the executives, the clergy and the politicians to be interviewed using a question guideline. Since data was qualitatively and quantitatively collected, qualitative and quantitative analysis was employed to analyse it. Archival and library data was subjected to document review analysis in tandem with other sources. It was found that the churches in central Kenya, due to the settler and colonial states faced conflicts concerning their attitude to African culture, labour policies and land alienation from both Christian and non-Christian Africans. It was these churches that were the founders of the "Protestant Alliance" and the missionary council which later became the Christian Council, since they needed to share and find ways of forging ahead in their evangelistic task s and coordinating their relations with the state. At a later stage missions in western Kenya joined the cooperation in the council more actively with an exception of the African Inland Church. This protestant alliance ' gradually evolved over time, addressing various issues of the day, to become the present NCCK in 1986. In the course of its Christian service and witness, the NCCK has enjoyed the government's support and commendation on the one hand and has suffered the government's rebuke and deregistration threats on the other, depending on the issue at stake. NCCK has, however, remained bold and undeterred in its professed duty to the Kenyan community. Through the council's awareness creation, mass conscientization programmes and community involvement approach to development, people's aspirations, mentalities and expectations have been greatly transformed. They have discovered their potential and capacity to analyse situations and transform them for their own betterment instead of depending on hand outs from the government and other NGOs. Proliferation of self-help groups and other community-based cooperatives in the spheres of the NCCK's influence is tangible manifestation of the NCCK's facilitative role. The above and many other issues were the main concern addressed by these work.