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Civil Society and Politics in Africa: The Case of Kenya

by Frank Khachina Matanga

Jul 12, 2000
This paper focuses on Kenya to demonstrate the role of the emergent civil society in African politics. Whereas fully aware of civil society=s double role in society, that is, being either progressive or reactionary, this paper focuses on the progressive segment of civil society in confronting the entrenched authoritarian state in Kenya. It is argued that the absence of formal political organizations that could confront the state in the period between 1982 and 1991 left civil society as the only credible alternative. But even after a multi-party system was re-established in late 1991, the emergent opposition parties were riddled with schisms along ethnic and personal ambitions for power.

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