Ethnicity, governance and socio-economic development in Africa: A case study of Kenya and its Luo community, 1963 - 2013
Omulo, Albert Gordon Otieno
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"Ethnicity" and disparate group-based socio-economic development make governance in Africa problematic. Despite this existential reality, the "ethnic" question in African governance remains, largely, only the subject of general discourse. There appears to be very little rigorous scholarship on the economic and socio-cultural dimensions related to the socio-historical construct, "ethnicity". Similarly, attempts to explain why African political culture, in general, continues to encourage the social reproduction of "ethnic" identities also appear to be largely lacking. This thesis aims to fill some of the gaps existent in scholarship of ethnicity vis-a-vis socio-economiccultural development by examining the antagonism between the Luo community and the Kenyan state. Its main objectives are to examine the specifics of the socio-economic consequences of the political marginalization of the Luo and to explain why "ethnicity" is, seemingly, strongly correlated with the crisis of state power in Kenya. This thesis is grounded on the following two major assertions: first, that "ethnicity", like its correlative, "race", is an ideological concept, devoid of any scientific substance; second, that "ethnicity" is an "exogenous construct", imposed on aboriginal people of Africa mostly by European colonizers.