An Examination of Kenya’s Fight against Corruption and Tribalism through Education with Reference to Freire’s Concept of Education for Liberation
Kiarie, Njuguna Peter
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Education can be used as a tool for either domestication or liberation depending on the way national programs are intended, formulated and implemented. Education that domesticates makes learners passive recipients of knowledge as it is dominated by the teacher. Consequently, learners neither realize their full potential nor participate in changing realities in their world. Iiberative education, learners are active participants in developing knowledge and become co- creators by developing critical consciousness which is necessary for realization of their potentialities to initiate change. In Kenya, many graduates of education system continue holding onto practices which dehumanize society such as corruption and tribalism rather than interrogating their practice and taking responsibility to change people's perception towards such vices. This study therefore sought to examine how education in Kenya could be made more liberative using Freire's concept of liberative action of education in order to liberate the society from these practices. The researcher has reviewed literature on the basis of themes that were guided by the objectives of the study. These were: To elucidate implications of various forms of bondage that dehumanize the Kenyan society, the Freirian concept of education for liberation, the success of education in liberating learners from social cultural and political problems in the society and how education could be made a more effective tool for liberating learners from social cultural and political problems. This study is guided by the Freire’s theory of learning which strongly supports student-centered approach to teaching and learning. As a philosophical study, phenomenological and analytical methods of inquiry were used to process data in order to derive conclusions that may provide insights on how education could be used to liberate Kenyans from practices which dehumanize the society. The findings of this study indicate that the bondage of corruption and tribalism has weakened social fabric and economy while democratic processes are negatively affected. Ultimately this has resulted to a lot of suffering and increased poverty levels. The study shows that education has not succeeded in liberating Kenyans from the bondage of corruption and tribalism which have enhanced tribal rather than national consciousness and exploitation of the masses by the elites. This study finds value in Paulo Freire’s concept of liberative education which proposes development of critical consciousness among learners to empower them to tackle problems in their world. The study recommends application of this concept in Kenyan education in order to make it an instrument of liberation and empower the people to break the bondage of tribalism and corruption.