Ethics Conference 2011

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    Devolution and nation building in Kenya
    (Strathmore University, 2011) Mulwa, Koki; Chege, Bernard N.; Nabulumbi, Lisa W.
    One of the key reforms of the constitution is the establishment of devolution through the country’s government. It is in the current constitution and will only come into effect after the next general elections, when the county assemblies and governors will be elected. (Ghai, Y& Ghai, J,) In this paper we have talked about devolution and related it to the dignity of the human person. First we have given a definition for devolution as per the Kenyan context. Secondly, we will look at how the United Kingdom has being impacted since devolution was enforced. Thirdly, we looked at three aspects of devolution; objects and principles of a devolved government, financial aspect of devolution and the gender aspect of devolution. We came to the basis of these aspects by looking at how the common “mwananchi” will be affected by them. Lastly, we have given a summary of the responses we got from conducting an interview. We interviewed our fellow students and lecturer’s on their thoughts about devolution being implemented in Kenya. This includes the positive and negative effects of devolution and whether the country can afford this form of government.
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    Analyzing ethics at the university level and its effective contribution to nation-building
    (Strathmore University, 2011) Musya, Mercy; Gathua, Peter; Ngeene, Duncan
    Education is a basic human need. Not only should it contribute to the growth of an individual’s knowledge but also their character. Education unlocks peoples’ potential and it is in this way that knowledge is power. Individuals especially in third world countries have a stereotypical view of the purpose, quality and quantity of education required as a basic foundation for life. Given the changes and developments in the world, man is coming to the realization that the basic educational system needs to be adjusted accordingly. An education system is inadequate if it teaches young people how to make a living but doesn't teach them integrity and values. The current education system in Kenya has produced a vast population knowledgeable but unable to efficiently apply that knowledge into relevant skill so as to contribute positively to nation-building. Likewise, when individuals are knowledgeable and skilled but lacking in or oblivious of the need for human dignity, education is incomplete. Therefore, various adjustments must be made to the system to increase its efficiency and this research tries to establish to what extent ethics is instilled at the University level of education. The research methods to be used will include primary methods such as one on one interviews with current and former university students and secondary techniques such as academic articles and journals. To guarantee authenticity of the data acquired a comparison will be carried out to check for consistency of the different individual opinions we receive. Also, the use of academic articles and journals as a reference will guarantee this paper’s validity. The weight of this research is basically finding out to what extent the education system at the university level promotes ethics in the society and how this plays a role of ethics in Nation Building. Based on the research, solutions and recommendations are being looked into for adjusting the university system and its curriculum in order for it to be more cogent and fulfill its purpose of turning scholars into complete beings with knowledge, wisdom, skill and dignity. The research also involves implementing one of the recommendations and describing the outcomes (positive, neutral or negative) and giving reasons based on these outcomes. Based on this experience, relevant and innovative adjustments will be made to the previous recommendations. This study is to be a conclusive and helpful contribution to the current education system; relevant and applicable in relevant institutions.
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    Ethical leadership practice: the foundation of political and economic development in Kenya.
    (Strathmore University, 2011) Minja, David
    The subject of ethical practices in Kenya has been a hot one for the last two decades. Unethical practices in organizations and at the political arena have been widely reported in the wake of many high-profile management and financial scandals. Even with the establishment of the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission and laws and regulations aimed at curbing corruption, the situation has not improved significantly. Leaders are coming under increasing scrutiny because of the role they play in managing ethical conduct and modelling ethical behaviour. Failure of political leaders and executives to provide moral leadership has led to citizens being disappointed and national goals remaining largely unmet. Increasingly so, recent debates about issuance of citizenship certificates may leave many citizens disenfranchised; all of which have a major influence on political and economic development. Theory and research suggest that leaders should, and do, influence ethical behaviour. This paper explores theoretical arguments why leaders should play an important role of influencing ethical behaviour and why it is imperative for them to model the desired behaviour. The paper explores ethical practices from Aristotle’s perspective, cognitive moral development and social learning theories. This paper also tries to argue that laws alone cannot ‘convert’ the society that has developed and perfected the art of unethical practices. A new way of thinking is necessary, that will involve and empower everyone to start thinking and behaving in an ethical way. The paper therefore provides a prescriptive model of addressing ethical dilemmas in the public service in order to promote nation building. Several recommendations applicable not only to the public service but also to other Kenyan sectors have been made and it is believed that if adopted will go a long way in transforming leaders and followers into ethically responsible people who will foster nation building. The work of transformation begins with leaders who are themselves transformed and in turn mentor others to produce the desired behaviour. In this way, political and economic development in Kenya will cease to be a mirage.
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    The Role of women in nation building
    Ngunjiri, Irene; Gachenga, Elizabeth
    The task of nation building requires the participation of all regardless of their race, ethnicity or gender in the creation of a strong state. The challenge of balancing between the need for unity and the recognition for diversity in the course of nation building is manifest not just in the interaction between Kenyans of different racial and ethnic backgrounds but also between the different genders. Strathmore University’s motto ‘that all may be one’ articulates the institution’s commitment to contribute through education to this task of nation building in a spirit of unity of races, ethnicities and gender. The appreciation of the need for gender equality has led to the enshrining of affirmative principles in Kenya’s new Constitution to ensure the participation of women at all levels of national decision making. This important milestone provides the opportunity to reflect on the role of women in nation building and thus the education that women should receive in order to prepare them to effectively contribute to nation building. This paper reflects on this by addressing the questions: What makes woman “woman”?; and What type of education does she need so as to make that unique contribution to nation building that only she can make?
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    Implementing 5-pillars to create a new society, new nation, and new leadership quality in kenya
    Gichuru, Francis Xavier
    In this discourse, we deliberately climb down from the academic citadel and attempt to put in practice what we have authoritatively identified as five pillars that characterised the African traditional education process, a bold decant of intangible cultural heritage (ICH) from Africa. Discounting any controversies, we have propounded these pillars as the sound foundation from the African traditional culture on which the modern Kenya (and, by extension, Africa and the wider global family) can rediscover sanity in her socioeconomic development agenda, especially now that she has launched a new constitutional order. This is, consequently, a proposal for resolving a predicament that has dragged the country backwards since independence in her attempt to advance in favour of the common good. In view of that, therefore, we note that the cultural ethos of the Kenyan society today has been warped by modernisation and globalisation. During the cultural transformation that took place when Kenyans/Africans were adapting to modernisation, something must have gravely gone wrong. Kenyans understood globalisation or modernisation to mean indiscriminately adopting foreign values and lifestyles, dropping what is African or indigenous, wrongly believing that whatever was practised in traditional society, however positive, was not good. This understanding left Kenyans in the confused state as seen today, and Kenyans must take responsibility for this.