It’s the act, process or means of bringing people of different or diverse cultures, religion, race, tribe, occupation and social status into forming one nation.
Importance of national integration.
- Enhances conditions favourable for peace and prosperity.
- Promotes national unity.
- Promotes the achievement of rapid economic and development.
- Eliminates and reduces inter-community conflicts and suspicions.
- Enhances nationalism and patriotism.
- Creates favourable investment conditions that attract foreign investment.
It refers to a nation that is fully fused into one, or integrated where every member or citizen has a sense of belonging.
Factors promoting national unity.
- The national language.
- National philosophies like socialism, harambee and nyayoism.
- National symbols like anthem, coat of arms and public seal.
- Social and economic interaction.
- Fair distribution of resources.
- Government institutions like judiciary, the legislature and executive.
- National days and events like mahujaa day, jamhuri and madaraka day.
Factors limiting national unity.
- Religious conflicts.
- Racial intolerance.
- Divisive politics.
- Economic inequality.
- Cultural conflicts.
Conflict means serious disagreement between people resulting from each opposing views or interest like armed struggle.
Conflict resolution is the working out of a settlement to defuse or solve a conflict.
Causes of conflicts.
- Differences among political parties over ideology or policies.
- Failure to uphold the laws of a country.
- Denial of citizens’ rights.
- Improper conduct of election.
- Border disputes between countries.
- Un-equal allocation of economic resources.
- Disputes over natural resources.
- Differences between employers and workers.
- Differences over trading policies, e.g. tariffs among nations.
- Failure to adhere to contractual obligations.
- Religious differences among people.
- Cultural intolerance between communities.
- Influx of refugees from neighbouring countries leading to pressure on resources.
- Mistrust between family and community members.
- Tribalism, nepotism and racism within a nation.
Categories of conflicts.
Individual against individuals.
Individual against the state.
Communities against communities.
State against state.
Methods of resolving conflicts.
It’s a neutral person who is appointed to solve a conflict amongst people.
It’s an art of negotiation between individuals or countries to resolve conflicts and may involve creating understanding and room for reconciliation.
It’s done by the parliament through passing of legislation that control conflicts.
Use of elders.
Parties involved appear before the elders who listen to them and come up with a solution.
Religious leaders have been called upon several tomes to resolve political and social conflicts in Kenya.
Legal action as a method of conflict resolution can be taken up by any of the parties in conflict.
The presence of the police helps to control crime that brings about conflicts.
International agreements on boarder security and utilisation of natural resources are a method of conflict resolution between countries.
The process of resolving conflicts.
The constitution of Kenya empowers the judiciary to resolve conflicts; the judiciary has established courts throughout the country with powers to solve cases.
There are cases which the parties at conflict may take to court or have them settled out of court.
They are brought to attention of the court directly by the complainant in person, through a sympathiser or a lawyer. A process referred to filing a case. The court will study facts presented by the complainant after which it determines if to file a case against the accused. It may dismiss or allow the case to continue.
The accused will attend court in person or through an advocate on a given date as both parties are allowed to call witnesses.
When all parties are through with their testimonies, a date is set for the verdict or judgement where the verdict is delivered and if any party dissatisfied is given chance to appeal to higher courts.
They are reported to police who arrest the suspects, interrogate them, record statements and investigate the crime.
They present the suspect before a court of law and prosecute. The suspect may be releases on bond as the case proceeds.
All parties in this conflict must be heard and their evidence considered, they are allowed to hire lawyers after which the magistrate sets a date for the verdict.
The process of solving conflicts out of court includes identifying the source of the conflict by the parties concerned. The party’s agents call on each other to sit and iron out their problems.
This is where the mediator is called and negotiates on the behalf of the parties involved in the conflict.
A state of emergency can be declared in cases of serious social conflict or in the event of breakdown of law and order.
Effects of conflicts.
- Massive displacement of people, they become refugees.
- Fear and insecurity due to anarchy.
- Losses of lives as people are killed.
- Destruction of property.
- Starvation due to crops destruction and disruption of agriculture activities.
- People become poor due to economic decline.
- Human suffering and misery becomes widespread.