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Journal: Problems of Education in the 21st Century (Vol.15, No. 1)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ; ;

Page : 109-117

Keywords : language; conflict management; elusive peace; reconciliation;

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There are more than forty ethnic groups in Kenya. The largest of these is the Kikuyu, representing 22 percent of the population. Fourteen percent is Luhya, 13 percent is Luo, 12 percent is Kalenjin, 11 percent Kamba, 6 percent Kisii, and 6 percent Meru. Others, including the Somalis and the Turkana in the north and the Boran in the Great Rift Valley, comprise approximately 15 percent of the population. These ethnic categories are further broken down into subgroups. One percent of the population is non-African, mostly of Indian and European descent (Population Survey, July 2000). The 2007 elections outcome may have triggered the ethnic and post –election violence, but the rate at which this degenerated into ethnic conflict showed how emotive the issue is. Today the country is trying to heal but the ethnic ‘overtones' speak volumes. Many African countries have deep cleavages based on factors such as ethnicity and religion, (Assefa and Wachira, 1996,) This paper purposes to examine the elusive peace and social stratification among the Kenyan people. It further explores the role and utility of Kiswahili language in national unity and conflict management. The paper argues for the establishment of a language policy that would create a positive attitude toward a cohesive society, beginning with the Educational Institutions. The paper argues that proper language utility can introduce, guide and catalyze the National healing process in Kenya.

Last modified: 2017-09-22 03:28:31