The state, IGAD and civil society organizations in socio-economic development of Turkana District, Kenya: 1963-2006
Chemelili, Philip K.
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At independence and in post independent period, the people of Kenya had a vision that would guide them to pursue radical socio-economic changes for the common good. But after forty years into independence majority of the people living in Turkana District still lived in abject poverty. This study therefore attempted to examine the roles played by the State, the IGAD and the Civil Society Organizations in the socio-economic development of the people of Turkana District of north-western Kenya. This study therefore, examined the historical factors that militated against the achievement of meaningful socio-economic development in Turkana District, demonstrated the shortcomings of the state approach to socio-economic development in Turkana District, examined the extent to which the multi-sectoral approach of State-the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development and Non Governmental Organizations led to tangible change in socio-economic lives of Turkana District residents and assessed the overall performance of region-based approach to socio-economic development. The neo-liberal approach as expounded by Kegley and Wittkopf (1997) and Keohane (1995) was adopted as its tool of analysis. The theory advocates that the state should accommodate an array of NGOs, transnational, supranational and transgovernmental relation and coalition building in an effort to uplift the socioeconomic status of the people. This study obtained data from both primary and secondary sources. Interviews were conducted after a purposive sampling. This was preferred so as to target respondents who are IGAD officers, government officials and employees of other specialized organizations, such as Civil Society Organizations and Voluntary Agencies. It was discovered in the course of the study that the general lagging behind in socio-economic development in Turkana District is a function of historical factors(ecological and human), the post-colonial initiated socio-economic development in the district was bound to fail, the synergizing of effort between the State, Civil Society Organizations and IGAD has great potential of unleashing forces and processes of socio-economic development in the District and lastly the regional approach to socio-economic development may have unique challenges to surmount, but holds the promise of transforming the socio-economic status of the people of Turkana District. Several recommendations as to how the socio-economic development in Turkana District can be advanced are suggested. The recommendations are based on the role the Public Service, the role of women in development, poverty eradication strategies, pastoral sector, HIV/AIDS, education, security and tourism. It is believed by the researcher that if the recommendations are followed by planning that involves the locals in implementation, Turkana District will eventually attain the much anticipated socio-economic transformation.
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