Main Author: Dr. Reuben Nguyo Lecturer under mentorship Programme
Department of Educational, Administration and Planning University of Nairobi
Co-Author: Jedidah Nyawira Kimathi, North-Eastern Hill University, India. Department of Education P.O. Box 793022, Meghalaya, Shillong
School accountability—the process of evaluating school performance on the basis of student performance measures—is increasingly prevalent around the world. Kenya has not been left behind. Therefore, the paper will explore the challenges and strategies of accountability in education in Kenya. Accountability in education is a broad concept that could be addressed in many ways, such as using political processes to assure democratic accountability, introducing market-based reforms to increase accountability to parents and children, or developing peer-based accountability systems to increase the professional accountability of teachers. The most commonly considered definition of accountability involves using administrative data-based mechanisms aimed at increasing student achievement. The study found out that the Government of Kenya is struggling with many challenges related to accountability in education. The challenges include: enrolment policy, education for individuals with disabilities, staff and performance, quality assurance and standards, management and governance among others. As far strategies to enhance accountability include devising performance indicators through The National Education Sector Plan (NESP) 2013-2018.
Key Terms: Accountability, Indicators of accountability, challenges
As the economies of nations compete for strong positions within a competitive global market place, many governments have become increasingly interested in the performance of all aspects of their education systems. This trend, coupled with the enormous expenditures that are devoted to education, has also precipitated widespread public requests for higher levels of scrutiny concerning the quality of education. These demands for information about school system performance can only be addressed through the implementation of systematic accountability systems.
Historically, the education profession has conformed to the requirements of regulatory or compliance accountability systems (usually based on government statutes), and has also subscribed to professional norms established by associations of educators. However, at the beginning of the 21st Century, accountability systems have also been required to respond to demands that professional performance be judged by the results that have been achieved (UNESCO,2005).
Accountability has been an educational issue for as long as people have had to pay for and govern schools. The term covers a diverse array of means by which some broad entity requires some providers of education to give an account of their work and holds them responsible for their performance.
Anderson (2005) asserts that Educational accountability targets either the processes or results of education. A desired goal is identified (e.g., compliance with the legal mandates of providing special education, highly qualified teachers, improved student performance), and measures are identified for determining whether the goal is met (e.g., a checklist of indicators that the legal mandates have been met, a target of 90% correct for teachers taking a test of current knowledge and skills, a target of 60% of students performing at grade level by the end of each school year). Criteria for determining whether the goal has been met can involve specific determinations of ways that the goal may and may not be met (e.g., deciding how many indicators in the checklist must be marked to be considered meeting the legal mandates, determining the specific content that does or does not count for specific types of teachers, determining how to calculate the percentage of students performing at a proficient level, and how to define grade level performance).
Models of Accountability in Education
A number of models of accountability in education have been developed, chiefly by Kogan (1986), Ranson (1986), Elliot et al. (1981) and Day and Klein (1987). These models illustrate different codes which specify, for example, alternative methods of presenting and evaluating the account. Whilst there are some differences of classification and nomenclature, four main models of educational accountability emerge from the literature: professional, hierarchical, market and public. Although it is unlikely that any of the ideal models will exist in its pure form.
(a) Professional Accountability
The emphasis on accountability for process is characteristic of professional accountability. Sockett (1980, p. 11) illustrates this, arguing that ‘the question (professionals) debate is not whether certain results have been achieved, but whether professional standards of integrity and practice have been adhered to’. In this form of accountability, teachers, and hence schools, are accountable to professionals. Ranson (1986) states that the educational process is so complex that only professionals can hold other professionals to account.
(b) Hierarchical Accountability
In contrast to professional accountability where accountability is ‘sideways’, the hierarchical model involves accountability ‘upwards’. This is exercised through the managerial hierarchy and stresses the contractual relationship with the state. Becher et al. (1981) describe it as an obligation to render an account to an employer.
(c) Market Accountability
In the market model, accountability is to the consumer (normally the parent). The emphasis is on accountability for outputs, mainly measured by examination results. In this system, schools are accountable to the consumer who chooses their product or an alternative in the marketplace. In order for the market to operate effectively, information (for example, examination results) needs to be available so consumers know the full specifications of the product they are ‘buying.’
(d) Public Accountability
Both market and public accountability involve an active role for parents. In the public model, this active role is required of the community more widely. The method of accounting stresses parental and community participation in determining the purpose and process of education (Ranson 1986). This operates collectively through the democratic process as well as indi-vidually, and therefore involves all individuals within an electoral ward. It stresses mutual accountability and partnership between politicians, professionals, parents and the community.
Forms of Accountability in Education
Accountability occurs in many ways in educational systems:
- a) System Accountability
Educational accountability in which the system is held responsible for the results of its students gained popularity in the early 1990s. Schools, local education agencies, and states are held accountable for the performance of all students in the public education system.
- b) Accountability for the Process of Education
This is a common form of educational accountability. Schools are required to meet accreditation criteria. Special education programs must demonstrate that they have provided services and maintained Individualized Education Programs (IEPs) in a manner consistent with the law. The desired goal of educational accountability focused on process is to improve the process that is targeted. Special education IEPs are an example of a process targeted for accountability. Meeting the process requirements means demonstrating compliance with a number of requirements in the law and in regulations for IEPs. Measurement occurs through the completion of a checklist, for example, that identifies the requirements (such as providing notice within a certain period of time, having specific signatures on the IEP document, and so on). The criteria for determining when the measures show that the goal has or has not been met are defined in terms of numbers of elements that must be checked. The consequences for not meeting the goal generally include a letter identifying the problems in the process. In some cases, repeated failure to meet the criteria results in penalties, such as reduction of funding, to the educational system.
- c) Individual Accountability
Student accountability implemented via promotion or exit exams is a common type of individual accountability in schools. Students are required to pass a test to demonstrate that they are ready to move either from one grade to the next (promotion) or leave the educational system with a credential certifying successful completion (exit). The tests that are administered to students generally cover those topics that the school system or its public have deemed important for individual students to demonstrate at a certain point in time. The criteria for determining when the measures show that the goal has been met (for instance, that the student is ready to move from one grade to the next) are defined in terms of passing scores on the test. In some cases alternative criteria are available to certain students who either are not able to pass the tests or who need to demonstrate that they have met criteria through other means.
Individual accountability for the adults in the education system include such variations as teachers being held responsible for passing tests to obtain or keep jobs, or principals and educators receiving salary bonuses on the basis of student achievement. This type of accountability includes the same components as other educational accountability systems, with goals, measures, and other criteria for determining when the goal has been met, and rewards and sanctions for meeting or not meeting the criteria.
Challenges to Accountability in Education
The Education Sector has been making improvements in terms of access to institutions of basic education and provision of services. However, the challenge of attributing learning outcomes to the investment in the sector still remains. The resource investment over the years, both for development and recurrent expenditures would have by know translated into exemplary results at the ECDE, primary and secondary school levels; however this is not the case.
At the ECDE level for instance, though the enrolment increased from 1.914 million children (967,544 boys and 946,678 girls) in 2009 to 2.37 million (1,175,530 boys and 1,194,518 girls) in 2011, the Gross Enrolment Rate (GER) was still at 65.5 per and at 41.8 percent in 2011. Clearly, this is an indication that many children of nursery school going age were still not enrolled in the
ECDE centers, a clear violation of the children’s right to basic education.
At the primary school level enrollments increased from 8.8 million (4.5 million boys and 4.3 million girls) in 2010 to 9.86 million (4.98 boys and 4.86 girls) in 2011; the gross Enrolment Rate was at to 115.0% while the Net Enrolment Rate was at 95.7% in 2011. While this demonstrate good progress in terms of access from a national point of view, the situation is not the same especially in ASAL areas where many children of school going age can still be seen staying at home during school days. The Completion rate stood at 74.6 per cent in 2011 clearly showing that children are dropping out of school. The question is, why do they drop where do those who drop go to?
In terms of transition from primary to secondary schools, the rate was at 73.3 per cent (68.9 per cent for male and 75.3 per cent for female) in 2011; again it is clear that some learners do not access secondary education; where do they go to? What alternatives do they have? Does the government know where they are?
At the Secondary School level the enrolment grew from 1.18 million students in 2007 (639,393 boys and 540,874 girls) to 1.5 million (804,119 boys and 695,896 girls) students in 2009 to 1.7 million (916,302 boys and 792,818 girls) students in 2010 and further 1.8 million (948,706 boys and 819,014 girls) in 2011. The GER for secondary level was at 48.8 per cent (51.0 per cent for boys and 46.8 per cent for girls) and the NER was at 32.7 per cent (32.6 per cent for boys and 33.1 per cent for girls) in 2011; a clear indication that many children of secondary school going age are not in schools.
Education for Individuals with Disabilities
While Kenya government recognizes the need to educate all children, including those with exceptional needs, there lacks a mechanism to ensure and oversee that all students have equal access to education. The crucial question regarding persons with disabilities, especially those with intellectual disabilities is: how will the rights of persons with exceptionalities be protected from economic, social, and political neglect? An estimated 80% of all individuals with disabilities reside in isolated areas in developing countries (Oriedo, 2003) with 150 million of them being children (Eleweke & Rodda, 2002). Disability-related issues affect approximately 50% of the population in these countries (Oriedo, 2003, Mukuria, Korir & Andea, 2007). In most cases, disability problems are compounded by the fact that most of the people with disabilities are extremely poor and live in areas where medical and educational services are not available (Eleweke & Rodda, 2002; Meja-Pearce, 1998; Oriedo, 2003; Mukuria & Korir 2006). According to the 2009 census, this group makes up approximately 20% of the Kenya’s population (Kenya Bureau of Statistics, 2009); unfortunately, only 2% of individuals with disabilities receive any form of special education (Eleweke & Rodda, 2003; Mukuria & Korir, 2007).
Staffing & Teacher Performance:
Though the outcry on teacher shortage continues to be heard, additional concerns also revolve
around teacher distribution with allegations of some schools having more teachers than they require while in other schools, at every given time, some classes remain untaught because of teacher shortage. Teachers’ absenteeism also remains an issue that cuts across many schools in the country with concerns that some teachers chose to be away based on a mutual agreement with the head teacher as opposed to an official documentation of leave of absence.
Quality Assurance & Standards support:
Teacher performance records are lacking in many schools: While at the Classroom level, it is not easy to determine the extent to which the teachers are delivering the right content; but instead the performance of the teacher is left to be reflected in the performance of the learners (often during external examinations)
Another critical gap is that the school terms often begin with the teachers not aware of the specific dates that the QASOs would be visiting their schools. The criterion that determines which schools to be visited during a particular term is also not readily available. Some schools also indicate that one calendar year ends without any QASO visiting their schools and as such no quality assurance support is received from MoE throughout the year. Most of the QA&SO are not clear on the kind of support teachers require and they also have capacity gaps.
Even though feedback is given to the schools after visits have been conducted by MoE officials, the feedback never trickles down to the learners and their parents / guardians. Most of the time the feedback is discussed at the teachers level while other actors in education service provision are left out. The feedback at times reaches the headquarters of MoE but there are no clear mechanisms of responding to such feedback until a crisis emerge.
Management and Governance:
While some schools have School Management Committees and Board of Management in place, that have undergone trainings conducted by Ministry of Education officials, the functioning of
these committees is not reflected in the manner in which school programmes and activities are implemented. In some instances, the head teachers continue to make decisions by themselves (as
individuals) and the SMC & BoM members hardly question such decisions. There is also lack of School development Plans in most schools and this creates an opportunity for poor plans.
The information on the funds received that is displayed on the school notice boards has been limited to the FPE funds with many head teachers not displaying any other funds the school receive, especially those collected from parents towards other programmes, for example the school feeding programmes. In terms of purchases of school items, there have been outcry among parents that some head teachers collude with suppliers to increase the prices of goods (often way ahead of the market prices) with the aim of receiving “kickbacks.”
Very few schools do generate annual financial reports for discussion with parents; majority of schools choose to discuss the financial reports with the MoE officials and ignore the parents, guardians and children. In addition, auditing of the funds that the schools receive every year is irregular and such audit reports are never shared with the parents, guardians and children.
Access to Information:
Information flow between the school administration and the teachers is another gap that exists in many primary and secondary schools. For instance, some teachers are only aware of the data in regards to the learners in the school and their performance but have no idea on the resource requirements of their schools and the management of resources that the schools receive. The level of awareness of some teachers in regards to various policies and guidelines in education service provision is also minimal; this is however attributed to lack of access to such documents at the school level; there are cases where the school head teachers limit such information to themselves and do not share with the other teachers in the school.
While the children are aware that the government has been financing the Free Primary Education, many of them are not aware of how much they have been entitled to over the years. Worse is the fact that some of the parents and guardians too are not aware of what their children
are entitled to under the FPE programme. This is attributed to lack of clear communication modes between the school administration and the children, and their parents and guardians.
Holistic Focus on Learners:
On an annual basis, the schools over concentrate on discussing the performance of the children in regard to KCPE and KCSE results; and very minimal is discussed in reference to performance of the children at other levels (class 1 – 7 & Form 1-3). While many of the school teachers are aware that some of the learners do not transit to secondary schools, it appears that majority of the teachers have no role in following up where such learners go to. For instance, there are cases where some teachers interact with their former pupils in the neighborhood such as in the market centers; while they are very much aware that such children have not enrolled in secondary schools; they do not bother to find out whether such children require support.
Some parents have also have left their children in the hands of teachers and do not care to follow up on what their children do in school; some do not even attend school meetings throughout the year and do not event care to find out what deliberations and decisions are made in such meetings.
Though the government supports the Free Day Secondary Education (FDSE) programme, there is a general feeling among the public that secondary education in Kenya is largely expensive. The fact that various categories of schools charge different amounts of fees is something that continues to amaze the public. There are cases of schools that get to acquire the National level status then increases the fees payable by about 50%; goes ahead to demand the same from parents and the government does nothing.
Various secondary school heads continue to incur exorbitant expenditures with completely no oversight. For instance who pays for the cost of Kenya Secondary Schools Heads Association Annual meeting? Is it the Government of Kenya? is it from the Head teachers personal incomes? or from the poor parents and guardians (from the fees paid to schools)? This is something that the public is seeking for accountability on the part of the government. Secondary schools in Kenya continue to manage millions of shillings annually; but majority of the schools do not report to the students, parents and guardians on their incomes and expenditure on annual basis. Reports that are shared publicly are largely in regards to performance and very minimal information on finances. A part from the details of the fees to be paid in the subsequent year, the secondary schools heads often give very minimal information on the expenditure of the previous
Even though various districts have a culture of annual education stakeholders meetings, the participants in such meetings are often limited to head teachers, teacher unions, FBOs and NGOs. Public participation in such meetings, for example through the Chairpersons of schools and other representatives of parents and children continue to remain very minimal.
Strategies towards Accountability in Education
The National Education Sector Plan (NESP) 2013-2018 is an all-inclusive, sector-wide
programme whose prime goal is: Quality Basic Education for Kenya’s Sustainable
Development. The sector plan builds on the successes and challenges of the Kenya Education Sector Support Programme (KESSP), 2005-2010. Sector governance, management and accountability in a decentralized setting with devolved responsibilities and diverse partnerships have been emphasized. Clear guidelines for coordination, transparency, and reporting at the national, county, sub-county and institutional levels are paramount. The focus on improvement of education quality specifically targets: improvement of schooling outcomes and impact of the sector investment; development of relevant skills; improved learning outcomes; and improved efficiency and effectiveness in use of available resources.
Four major sets of performance indicators for NESP are identified as;
- Social development and economic growth for the 21st century are dependent on a broad base of capable, literate, numerate, confident and motivated citizens. These citizens will actively contribute to a knowledge-based society. The National Education Sector Plan (NESP) sets out to shape the education system to complement and support the national aspirations of Kenya.
- The sector plan as set out in NESP emphasizes a holistic and balanced development of the entire education sector, and is embodied in recent legislation, including the Basic Education Act 2013. The NESP Implementation Plan focuses on the urgent need to enroll all students in basic education, raise literacy and numeracy levels, reduce existing disparities, and improve the quality of education with a focus on teacher quality, school level leadership, more effective applications of teacher training in the classroom, increasing resources to the education sector, and targeting improvements and monitoring key results.
- NESP sets out to expand on the national aspirations set out in Vision 2030 through a statement of comprehensive goals and objectives. It further aligns a commitment to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the education related goals of the Millennium Development Goals with a vision for the wider educational aspirations of Kenya.
- The foundation priorities of the education system provide the strategic implementation processes set out in NESP. Through the extensive consultation processes undertaken for developing NESP, stakeholders elaborated that the vision and goals embody and cluster around four principles:
This principle is about the fullness of the range of learning opportunities provided for all children, young people and communities. The NESP describes the social circumstances and barriers to learning that present challenges to implementation planning.
Integrated and Unified System
This principle is about the characteristics of an efficient education system that effectively and coherently integrates all learning institutions, central authorities and administrative agencies, through their mandates, processes and procedures. NESP describes governance, management and administrative expectations (institutional arrangements) that will ensure all students are exposed to opportunities of shared knowledge and culture.
Equitable School Environment
This principle is about the provision of safe, stimulating and innovative learning places of modern pedagogy for all children and young people. NESP sets out goals and objectives for the fair provision of infrastructural, teaching and learning resources and support systems to benefit all learners.
Quality of Learning
This principle is about the setting of rigorous quality benchmarks in the curriculum and its delivery and assessment so as to ensure that the learning opportunities for all children and young people are maximized. NESP describes expectations for minimum standards of the physical learning environment, curriculum development, teacher performance, and prescribes the work of agencies to monitor and assure ongoing quality.
- NESP also implies four central and interdependent policy pillars to underpin the
development of each of the described implementation strategies:
Pedagogy Enhanced by Technology
NESP makes a very strong representation of the role of technology in a modern, vibrant and successful society. NESP envisages a solid technology base through information and communication technology (ICT) to be reflected within the curriculum at all levels, its delivery and the system support mechanisms. The principles described above clearly focus on the fundamental place of pedagogy in lifting and maintaining quality of learning. This policy pillar establishes the place of technology as a powerful support to pedagogy but not the determinant of pedagogy.
The NESP principle of an integrated and unified system demands that meeting the challenges requires the design, development and implementation of agencies, approaches and processes that support the interdependencies of all elements within the system. The setting of priorities and sequencing of implementation strategies will take account of the expected growth and impact of the education system. The NESP elaborates the mechanism (the National Education Board, NEB) whereby growth and impact is considered across the social and wider sectors.
The achievement of the sector plan requires a high commitment by all key stakeholders in the education system to working together as a team. Collaboration as an approach, however, goes beyond individuals working together for the common goal with a focus on the learner. It includes the establishment of conditions and relationships between the central administration, agencies and learning institutions to facilitate collaborative processes and approaches. The design of new and strengthened strategies is expected to stimulate and maintain a focus on group, rather than individual, effort through to the very top of the system.
Achieving the NESP goals in a decentralized system requires significant capacity building at all levels of the education system. The strengthening and establishment of new ways of working through clearly defined roles, expectations, responsibilities, accountabilities and mandates are best achieved by capacity building of both human and resources. This policy pillar will strive to incorporate capacity building as a prime driver for reform.
The Government of Kenya is encountering many challenges as it deals with accountability in education owing to the fact that the idea of accountability has not yet been embraced fully neither by the assessors nor those being assessed. Mechanisms have been formulated to enhance accountability but have not yet been implemented fully.
There are should be concerted efforts among all the education stakeholders to ensure there accountability in education. There also needs sensitization about accountability in education as many stakeholders are not aware of their role as far as accountability is concerned. Follow up measures on accountability should be to put in place.
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Special Issue on 400th Death Anniversary of William Shakespeare
This year marks the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death in Stratford-upon-Avon. To commemorate this landmark, International Journal of Research will publish a Special Issue in November 2016 containing Research articles exploring developments and fresh perspectives in Shakespearean criticism, historical and textual research, and drama studies. The issue is multidisciplinary in scope, with contributions from a broad range of scholarly perspectives welcomed, including—but not limited to—research in the following fields: language and literature, history, performance and theatre studies. Submissions are solicited that illuminate academic thinking about Shakespeare, his writings, the social and political contexts that shaped him, as well the enduring cultural (and other) influences of his creative achievements to the present day. Research Articles for this special issue are invited (5000 words maximum).
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International Journal of Research
Mustafa Wshyar Abdullah AL-Ahmedi
Lecturer at Koya University – Koya, Erbil/ Iraq
This article is exploring the use of language by the individuals of a group who are active members of a team. Real examples are given to further investigate the language awareness in real life communications.
Key Words: Language, Awareness, Workplace, Team, Individuals
Working in a team can enhance a great experience for a participant in a group work. The enhancements can be new information, the way of dealing with subject matters, and communication with people who may have different ideas. Those features are mostly very important to be existed in a person who looks for a good employment opportunity. It is a reality that most employers try to employ someone with those and some other characteristics like a good command in using technology. Integrating to a work environment is significant for an employee to perform an acceptable performance. To be a successful person in a workplace, being aware of cross cultural and different types of community of practice has its significance.
As a part of Language Awareness in the Workplace, the students had to work in one of the projects which were offered to participate. One of them was “Wish upon a Star” and the other one was “Equality and Diversity at UCLan”. All the students decided to go with the first one because the majority desired to take part in it and the minority of students did not like the idea of creating a small group. “Wish upon a Star” is a project which leads to publishing a book about star and constellation stories for children. The aim of the book is to provide the readers, who are supposed generally to be children, with constellation and star beliefs in India and the UK. The master students in English Language and Literature were requested to contribute some cultural facts and beliefs about sky issues to the content of the book.
The preparation for the project started in early December 2011 and the book is expected to be published around July 2012. This report is written to show what were done to contribute to the project and the way which steps were taken. It explores the writer’s, who was a group member, weaknesses and strengths which are very important to be discovered for improvement. The benefits will also be mentioned as the most participants could obtain new skills or at least improving the existed ones.
- Community of Practice
- An Introduction to Community of Practice
The term community of practice (CofP) is frequently mentioned in the modern world, especially when individuals exist in a group form to take a responsibility. Lave and Wenger (1991: 98) define the term: “A community of practice is a set of relations among persons, activity, and world, over time and in relation with other tangential and overlapping communities of practice.” That is to say, communities of practice are groups of codes which understood and used by the same members of a group. In other words, communities of practice are the ways of communication among the members of a group to achieve the common aims.
Hardcastle and Powers (2004) see community of practice as an application to practice skills to make communication in community groups, organizations or institutions. The relation among individuals is based on the community practice. In other words, it is a community of practice which arranges an acceptable relationship among members of a group. The members can communicate with each other through some common communication rules which are known by all the other members as they are familiar with the community they gathered in.
Communities of practice are everywhere; human beings belong to several communities of practice in different time and places: at home, work, school, or in hobbies (Wenger, 1998). It can be said that a community of practice can be found in all aspects of life and it is the main tool of communicators. It is a tool which helps human beings to communicate and share ideas. They can understand each other through it and they can express themselves easily. As a result of this argument, community of practice involves in all forms of communication or it is the basic and it’s the way which makes communication. Wenger (1998: 84) claims that there are three dimensions of a community of practice which are: mutual engagement, joint enterprise and shared repertoire. To understand these dimensions, looking at an example can be helpful before defining them. A large company which consists of many departments can be a good sample to give the reader a clear overview about the dimensions. The managers of departments can altogether engage in a group meeting which is arranged for all of them to discuss the goals of the company and they mutually engage. They may have a joint enterprise from discussing the achievements among themselves. The managers can also have shared repertoires by exchanging stories of achievements and other events.
- Mutual Engagement
This is a regular interaction which people in pairs or groups discuss general issues (Holmes and Meyerhoff, 1999). This type is very simple which usually does not need arguments or debates. It is general discussions and it is the basis of relations. It can be said this one is used when the members have a shared goal and they all work to achieve it. As a result, the members communicate through this type of CofP because the target is the same. The communication can be while drinking a coffee or small meetings.
- Joint Enterprise
It is more than a shared goal and needs process; complex relationships are involved in this dimension (Wenger, 1998). Members usually debate and have more serious meetings for longer hours.
- Shared Repertoire
This dimension is the most complex one which linguistic resources involve in and The meetings are more serious in which gestures, pictures and regular meals become a part of the CofP (Holmes and Meyerhoff, 1999). The members of a group negotiate the meaning which shows disagreement sometimes.
- Community of Practice of the MA English Language and Literature team
The group consisted of different people from different cultural and educational backgrounds. There was a main goal which was a contribution to publish a book and all the members worked for the same aim. It is worth mentioning that there was a main group in which sub groups involved in. My course mates and two of the tutors were members in a subgroup. This sub group mainly arranged meetings for its members and attended once the general meeting of the whole group. The whole group, which was the main one, included MA English Language and Literature team, MA Publishing Team and MA Creative Writing for Children Team.
The common goal of the main group and subgroups was the same which was preparing the content for the book. Each group and individual had different duties; the duties were divided among the subgroups through their educational backgrounds. My group was supposed to carry out a research and collect data related to cultural beliefs as our educational background relates to language, culture and literature. Our part was exploring the beliefs in India and the UK about constellations and stars. Two members of the group had an Indian background and two members were British who were familiar with the beliefs in the UK. The other three members had no background about both countries and they tried to help those members to collect data and find information about both cultures.
Regarding the power, all the members were equal in terms of controlling or managing the project. None of the members in the whole group including supervisors were more powerful. All the ideas were discussed and they were arranged to create a good content to the project. In brief, all the members decided on the content of the project and there was not anyone to have a final decision as the group generally decided on the final decision.
- Discursive Chosen Community of Practice
Discursive means everyday talk and it is a multi-utterance of talk; in order to analyze a conversation, meeting or talk, discursive should be analyzed (Tracy, 2002). Tracy (2002) argues that a talk is called discursive practice rather than a talk because it leads us to recognize the talk not like just a single thing, but to see it like an activity which has different parts. To interpret a talk, all the aspects like culture, speakers’ power status, politeness/ impoliteness and the others should be analyzed. After considering all these aspects, the exact meaning behind that speech might be explored and understood. As a result, it can be said that discursive practices are mainly used in conversation analysis to see how a conversation is conversed to show how successful it is.
The language of communication for the MA English Language and Literature team was English as nobody could talk the first language of some other participants. Some of the members of the team had different accents but it did not affect the communication. All members’ speech tone was fine and it was always stayed at an average level which was considered polite. All the members of the team started studying in the same course since September 2011 and continued till late May 2012, but still some members of the group sometimes confused some other members’ names or even they did not know. This case shows that there was a lack of communication among some of the members and they did not have tight relations with each other. If the confusion or not knowing the names does really prove this, that means the relation among members of the team had to be tighter to enhance higher achievements.
In terms of the practices of the MA English Language and Literature team, it can be said that power was essentially equal as all the members worked all together. The decisions were taken through evaluating all the individual ideas and the ones, which were believed to be the best, were chosen. Generally speaking, the power did not have an important role as a community of practice in the group. The tutors who worked with us did not have a power of leading the project to any direction which they might desire. Their role was to guide us and answering our questions about the project to do our part very well as all student members were new for such a research and project.
The practices like jocular and politeness were very common. There were many different ideas about the project and all the participants tried to show their thoughts to be admitted by other members. All the discussions were done in a very polite and friendly environment. To the best of my knowledge, cultural differences never made a problem. The obstacles or problems were solved through jokes and indirectly without harming any member. For example, a member of the group had always a problem with time managment; the member usually arrived to the meetings late. Other members did not react or sometimes I used jokes as a reaction, like telling that the member was supposed to arrive later and the moment was taken humorously. I personally tried to solve all the problems without making any trouble for the team. As it has been mentioned, the late arrivals or not attending was the biggest issue for the team. In such cases, other members volunteered to do the job which was considered to be done by someone else. In spite of this, those members who had such problems were encouraged to participate the meetings and to share towards the project.
Collectivism and individualism had their influence on the members but they did not change the direction of the activities. The members of the team were divided equally on both these cultural backgrounds. The members who came from collectivistic cultures desired to arrange more meetings, while people from individualistic cultures did not mind and they thought the discussions could be done by using Facebook and emails. A member who was from a collectivist culture was not very happy as we did not have as many meetings as that member preferred to have. In spite of this concern, all other members including others from collectivist cultures were quite happy about the progress of the project. High context and low context was another difference like collectivism and individualism, but I never felt about its existence. All the members were very friendly and as it had been mentioned earlier, the power was equal which did not make any difference among us to recognize this matter.
- Employability Outcomes
The project was an opportunity for me to improve the skills which directly relate to my future employment. Communication skills were among the most important ones that I needed. In my undergraduate study, I did not have any group works; though, this project was the first one in my life which I became a group member to carry out a research. Communicating with people from different academic level and nationalities made me more communicable. This is a very important feature for a person to have it while seeking an employment opportunity. After the period of the project and communicating to the members of the group, now I am more confident in terms of contacting other people. The key point here is confidence because it can be increased through practicing the skills in real workplaces. To be honest, I was not very confident in my communication in the past, but now a serious improvement can be seen. This improved skill is a significant outcome of working on the project. It can definitely be said that I will communicate easier in the future and it is a very important feature to have to be more employable.
Time management is another issue which I see as an employability outcome of this project. I usually had been good at managing my time, but when started this project, the skill needed improvements. During the work of the project, many weaknesses could be found about the time management skills. Through consulting other members and external sources, some of the negative points were changed to positives. This point is very important for my future employment and career because success can be the result of good time management. I was provided with very useful leaflets and sources by the tutors about this issue. After reading them, I found that I had to manage my time better as it was not great. Now, my time is managed better and I can have more activities as the least amount of time is spent carelessly or without a plan. I have many goals that I work hard to achieve them. My main targets are obtaining higher degrees and learning more to have a better employment opportunity. Trying to reach all the achievements need a good plan which requires managing time very well. This skill can have a main role in my future employability.
The dream employment for me is working in a group which consists of people from different cultures and nations. Such an employment essentials cross cultural skills, that is to say, someone with a good knowledge of different cultural aspects. The group of people which involved in the project was quite diverse. I worked with people who had different ideas and attitudes. It was a good introduction for me to learn some basics of dealing with people who may think differently especially with different customs. It does not look like having a conversation with someone who the same culture is shared with. In this sense, communicators should be more careful to avoid misunderstanding. After communication with all the members of the team, my cross cultural information increased significantly.
We had many meetings to discuss the project; a great number of people from different courses and positions attended to the meetings. In the meetings, I usually could improve my leadership skills as I always tried to participate and contribute something to the meetings. It can be said that being active in a group can enhance leadership skills because usually active people become leaders. Problem solving was another issue which I could recognize it from myself; I could solve some of the problems in a few meetings. While my leadership and problem solving skills were improving, my self-confidence increased significantly. As people relied on me sometimes and they wanted me to speak at the meetings, I became more confident in communicating with other people. This helped me to recommend solutions and new ideas with less hesitation.
Using technology to enhance a group aim was another new thing for me. Facebook was generally used to update group members about the recent changes of the project and sometimes, the ideas were discussed there. We had two Facebook groups: one of them was shared between students of my course and MA publishing students, the other one was dedicated to the students of my course. The second one was not very active as we usually preferred face to face communication, but I usually became an active member of the first group. I used the group to update MA publishing students about our works. It was proven to me that a space on a social network can be very useful for a group to work on a project. People from a work place can have such a group to discuss issues and problems about their job or they can easily ask questions and search for the answers there.
Team work was very new for me and I found that it is more beneficial than doing a type of work individually. It could be seen that a team work was more successful than a work of an individual. In the project, I realized that to get great achievements for a group, a shared aim of the team is very important. That is to say, all the members of a group should work to achieve a target and the group achievements should be more important than individual attainments.
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INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF RESEARCH
Dr Hina Abbasi &Dr Musferah Mehfooz ,
COMSATS, Lahore, Pakistan. Ms Sara Saeed, COMSATS, Lahore, Pakistan
From moral philosophy to the theistic doctrines, the intellectual roots of critical concepts and gender based ideology set the tradition of exploitation. Discrimination against women has strengthened the bonds of subordination that they denied their economic and social rights. Internal conflicts and wars place them in a more vulnerable position, displacement and destruction, especially military conflicts increases violence and crime against women and subject them to the cruel and inhuman punishments. Moreover though the world over the past decade have had processes of profound cultural including political and social transformation which have changed the face of the world, multi faceted discrimination and exploitation graphically captured against women. The traditional societies, like Pakistan where culture and tradition creating stereotyped roles for men and women, a super ordinate-subordinate hierarchy is constituted and is extended from family unit to society. The dilemma did not end here, the critical part, the phenomenon of violence against women a means of humiliation of different kind is inhibited women and they have been vulnerable to acts of violence in the family, in the society and even by the states.
Key words: Moral Philosophy, Theistic doctrines, ideology, subordination, vulnerable, transformation, violence, exploitation, dilemma, critical, humiliation.
(In the name of Pakistani young girls, who are facing the challenge of being human .)
“Violence can be visible or invisible or camouflaged in moral terms.
It is always a coercive instrument to uphold or
En force cultural codes of honor. (Maithreyi.Krishnaraj)
The Islamic Republic of Pakistan generated another horror story, which contributes to define the social basis for our contemporary moral fragmentation, rejection of ethics,provide a viable content to understand that suppression of women by egoistic brutality is a frequent practice.Honorkilling, a common phenomenon in Pakistan, but this caseof Farzana Parveen is rare of its kind, on May
27, a young woman who had married on her free will was stoned to death by her father and brother,including 20 other family members armed with bricks, they smashed her skull and she died instantly on a busy road in the city of Lahore, in the vicinity of the Lahore high court. Farzana Praveen was pregnant and on her way to court to contest abduction case against her husband.
Moreover, no public protest on wider range has been reported so far.
Why should we care about the existing order?
Where is the way out?
The dynamics of violence, as mentioned by(Galtung Johan), there is a deep rooted violence theory hurting directly with a support system of state structure and culture that justify it, the way the violence is practiced ,how frequently it is practiced, raises the questions of violent behavior/attitudes, and the social fabric, how it takes the responsibility for human rights violations and act with due diligence to prevent it. The central theses, remains that in order to prevent violence, sought to eradicate traditions which prescribe, honor killing.
( Judy El_Bushra&Eugenia Piza),while analyzing the parameters, the root causes of gender violence impunity at different levels through social interaction, stresses for control mechanism that how a society significantly take the responsibility to control violence affirmed init. The control mechanism depicts, the reflection, the value the given society places to ethics, humanism, mutual respect, Universality of human rights, religion and religious toleration, democracy and good governance.
As we categorically burdened by the ideas that history and society advance our understanding of human beings, resolving conflicts, society and its paradigms its structural development, the moral patterns, necessarily shaped by the behavior of the mass of the individual of that particular society. Conception ofhumans developed in this way, human qualities identifies a society, and the norms of freedom the paradigm upon which its legitimacy rests. How could a mother takes the life of her children, what does it reflect, violent hopelessness, which eventually project a decaying society. If religion is a significant pattern and socially salient, evidences shows the actual disappearance of religion from the lives of the people, a disastrous for culture and civilization.
( Dr Leila Ahmad) raises a very interested question, are Islamic societies inherently oppressive to women? What does Islam says in this retrospect?
And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts): verily in that are Signs for those who reflect.(Q,30:21)
They are your garments and ye are their garments. Allah knoweth what ye used to do secretly among yourselves; but He turned to you (Q,2:187)
(Mahnaz Afkhani)in her article, gender Apartheid, cultural relativism opined, that in Muslimsocieties, women faces preordained and prescribed boundaries, and relativist discourse on human rights, essentially a western approach following the universal concept of human rights have been manipulated by Islamist as a form of cultural imperialism.
The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said in 2002, “As pastors of the Catholic Church in the United States, we state as clearly and strongly as we can that violence against women, inside or outside the home, is never justified.”When I Call for Help: A Pastoral Response to Domestic Violence Against Women”. United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (November 12, 2002). ISBN 1-57455-509-X.
(Steven Tracy), author of “Patriarchy and Domestic Violence” writes: “While patriarchy may not be the overarching cause of all abuse, it is an enormously significant factor, because in traditional patriarchy males have a disproportionate share of power… So while patriarchy is not the sole explanation for violence against women, we would expect that male headship would be distorted by insecure, unhealthy men to justify their domination and abuse of women.
(Tracy, Steven. (2007). Patriarchy and Domestic Violence: Challenging Common Misconceptions. Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society. 50(3):580-583.
(Marjorie Proctor-Smith) in “Violence against women and children: a Christian Theological Sourcebook” states that domestic physical, psychological , violence is a sin. It victimizes family members dependent on a man and violates trust needed for healthy, equitable and cooperative relationships. She finds that domestic violence is symptom of social sin
(Adams, Carol J.; Fortune, Mary M. (1998)). Violence against women and children: a Christian Theological Sourcebook. New York: The Continuum Publishing Company. Pages 428-9. ISBN 0-8264-0830-3
Women is formally declared even by the enlightened Aristotle, affirmed the inherent superiority , and of male to woman, and Pythagoras,who gave explicit characteristics to gender, which ordained and did not nurtured harmony and egalitarian humanity, rather continues to have negative consequences. (james w.Prescott,3/4 1995) .
Theology of gender morality have had its roots so systematic that, it is for these reasons that no one major religion of the world has been successful in the moral education of its members to avoid violence against women.(James w.Prescott 1995).
Family role in this context encapsulated as it has become a cite of contestation, stretch on the parameters of intimacy, towards ideas that how relationship are constituted, toward ideas which acknowledge the unique role of women inseparable of civilization itself. Civilization in extricable linked with humanism and egalitarian system which does not perpetuate gender bifurcations stressing to engage all population, foster cooperation that societies are stable which are made up of active citizens, men and women participate and use their voices to energize the nation.
A number of tools/ questions havebeen raised, some of the major questions to be asked are:
- Existing definitions of rights, is right varies and is gender specific?
- Is female subordination inherited paradigm?
- Is it generated by traditional social taboos?
- Is it politically constructed and maintained by patriarchal interest, ideology, and
Universal declaration of human rights, article 1 says, all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, endowed with reason and conscience and towards each other in a spirit of brotherhood, the concept of women has not been endowed as a human being, equal to those of men, but as a commodity in the traditional societies irrespective of their class, ethnic and religious faction.
The right to ownership, gave women the status of commodity, and the owner the ultimate right to decide the fate of the vulnerable, to be exchanged, bought and sold.(Tahira, 1999)
.My young faculty member Sara Saeed , being the member of this society raised , very different and debatable questions, she reveals the complexities of a society to which she is the part,
What is more important,honor or life, while honors is cultural relativism , and right to life absolute and universal? Cultural relativism should be subjected to scrutiny.
Women andfear born together in Pakistan, lived a chained life, conditional on traditions, norms and rigid cultural set up, defiance resulted death by shooting, burning, or killing with axes, allegation matters not the truth. To protect and restore honors, the frequency of targeted women contributes to an atmosphere of fear.
The poet ( AttiyaDawood) quoted, how a small girl in Sindh reflects contraventions of her proprietary control,
‘My brother,seyes forever follow me.My father, s gaze guards me all the time, stern and angry…We stand accused and condemned to be declared Kari and murdered.:
Conventional wisdom with its core operates female behavior, the part of the gender identity determined cause of violence or violence provoking female behavior.
Honor killing a phenomenon rooted so deeply in social fabric, contained women’s universal rights systematically with fatal consequences, urban and rural educated or non –educated use honor killing as an effective tool a mechanism to reproduce subordination and thereby restore honor. Honor killing, a formidable factor of Pakistani society,urban educational professionals too strikingly support the brutal inhuman act, Saima Sarwar,s mother, a doctor by profession facilitated the honor killing of her daughter in Lahore in 1999, when Saima sought divorce.
Moreover Pakistani women could not defy the traditional practices as they are the cultural manifestation of their community, they could not escape the threat of honor killing, Rukhsana Naz perceived to have extra marital relations, murdered by hermother and brother.
Community ,s culture may not be subjected to challenge, to restore honor invoke public demonstration of power considered genuine social and cultural patterns of a society, supported killing a part of cultural traditions since it was in accordance with traditions it could not be a crime, traditions remains unbroken.(Document:Pakistan:Honor killing of women).
Punitive domestic violence is frequent and normal practice, house hold phenomenon,( Shehnaz Bokhari), of the Progressive Women Association in Islamabad reports, that the organization has monitored 1,600 burned women cases since March 1999, these are only the reported cases.Similiarly burn cases are rarely investigated by the police, in lahore183 women reported tohave died of burn injuries allegedly caused incooking incidents. The HRCP report added that at least 70 of the victims were not even cooking when the supposed incident took place.InDelhi, an average of two women per day, burned alive in dowry related incidents during 1983.
Again HRCP,s annual report reveals, women’s subordination remained a routine phenomenon, a prevalent practice by custom and tradition and even by religion, that much of the violence against women was considered normal behavior. Moreover, a sample shows 82 percent of women in rural Punjab feared violence resulting from husband’s displeasure over minor matters in the most developed urban areas 52percent admitted being beaten by husbands.
Violence against women has become a prominent issue inhuman rights discourse drawing attention to the alarming state of women’s rights in Pakistan during 1990 , human right agencies have launched campaign to stop violence against women.
Though Pakistan has alreadysigned international human rights agreements and partly introduced them in to its legal system, but pluralism in religion provides an inconsistent , contradictory and ambiguous definition of women’srights, which further undermine the rights of women, granted by international law and even by constitution.(SilvieBovarnic).
The issue of killings in the name of honour began to appear on the political agenda in
Pakistan in 1999 as a result of growing pressure from NGOs, the media, activists, and
UN agencies including UNICEF. On 21 April, 2000, at a National Convention on Human
Rights and Human Dignity, General Pervez Musharraf, The Chief Executive of Pakistan
announced that such killings would be treated as murder. “The Government of Pakistan,
vigorously condemns the practice of so-called ‘honur killing’. Such actions do not find
any place in our religion or law.” The killings continue, but steps are now being taken to
address the issue. DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AGAINSTWOMEN AND GIRLS,Innocenti Digest no. 6)
Is civilization failing? If it is so it is just because of the failure of the discovery of its most significant root women, is clearly inseparable from the civilization, the conditions which are not compatible for a peace full, harmonious and egalitarian humanity. She did play a fundamental role in thedevelopment of the humanist persona.(JamesW.prescott!995).Domestic violence, is rampant, without any distinction of developing and developed nations, has been the specific feature, and continuum, that cuts across cultures, races, and ideology.
As far as the struggle to be taken as human being is concerned, is a n,unfinished history, indispensable component of traditional societies, runs so deep in the social set-up and strengthened by patriarchal interest, ideology, and institutions.( Jean,Trounstine) in her article The forgotten Minority, emphasized, that systematic institutionalized violence against women eroded their sense of identity and dignity.
(ArvonnesFraser), Becoming human, seek the development of women rights, in debited to education as the only essential toolto access to knowledge and power and need to understand human rights with reference to knowledge.(Julieta Kirkwood), establishes a wonder ful correlation between peace within the home and peace in the nation.
Citations& develop ment:
Violence against women has become one of the most pervasive phenomenon, continues to be a global epidemic, denying women fundamental rights of equality,security, dignity, and self –worth. Domestic violence, usually cordoned effectively by the tacit silence, even state and law enforcing agencies did not bother to interfere or know about the incident, taking it as a family matter.
Violence , against women has aglobal dimension, and prevalence of violence against women is so alarming that no society can claim itself a violence free place, but violence against women is there having variations in patterns and trends. The more vulnerable to violence are the specific groups including minority groups indigenous and migrant women, refugee women and those in the situations of armed conflict, women in the institutions and detention, women with disabilities, female children and elderly women.(UNICEF).
The industrial revolution first contribute to address narrow gender gaps and ,:The Dolls House, a novel by Eliot, a stroke against the prevalence of ideologies challenge the traditional legitimacy raise the voice of women as an living entity.(NoorJehanN.gGanihar,2007).
The real argument pertaining to women struggle can be derived from the facts that the history of women rights has been a struggle in every historical epoch for equal treatment,(the United Nations Declaration on the elimination of violence against women, General Assembly Resolution, December1993) declares that violence against women is a manifestation of historically unequal power relations between men and women which have led to domination over and discrimination against women by men and to the prevention of the full advancement of women.
The idea of women subordination did not exist as categorical imperatives, there role have been socially constructed, Patriarchy consists of philosophical and social system in which men by force direct pressures, ritual, language, customs, etiquette, education division of labor, the role of women is determined by male.(SumitaParmar)
Power imbalances enhanced gender violence, salient feature in patriarchic society, categorized as and manifested in culture oriented notions like, domestic violence, female feticides and infanticide, denial of health care and nutrition for girl children, and harassment.
The UN declaration on the elimination of violence against women, defines violence, as manifestation of historically unequal power relations between men and women, and violence against women is one of the crucial social mechanism by which women are forced in to sub-ordination position compared with men.Women sub ordination, when it extended to women economic and social subordination, enhanced the vulnerability of women to violence at home, at work or elsewhere.
Moreover,” the denial of equal property right put them into greater risk of poverty, disease, violence and homelessness.”(Tracqui True).
Owner ship of land may be served as deterrence against domestic violence. Studies in Kerala and West Bengal reveals (Tracqui True) that women with property have two times less chance of violence.
But in case of Pakistan, this variable does not work, owner ship rights are rather at stake ,women are denied to be married and major consideration is the property, or assets that the young women has a right to inherit, the honor defiles male control extends demonstrate his power to safeguard his assets to be divided in this episode they are forced to marry a man more than twice of her ageeither childhood marriage or marriage with Quran, the blind traditionswhich identify roots of violence, and the culture that justify it.
From what is left by parents and those nearest related there is a share for men and a share for women, whether the property be small or large,-a determinate share.(Quran4:7)
The concept of ownership failed to serve as deterrence in Pakistan, their ownership rights are at stake when they are to be married, some parents, mostly in feudalistic culture, fearing property division used to linger on their daughter’smarriages on the various relational variables.
The status of women in the contemporary society involves history and sociocultural configuration that how the position of women finally comes to this point and the major factors contributed to the disempowerment are patriarchy, socialization, and culture including religion.
Situation in South Asia is more alarming, as it has been declared as the “least gender sensitive region in the world:” where discrimination begins even before birth would be mothers being compelled to female feticide as manifested by the rising incidents.
. Pre birth discriminationcontinues in the shape of substantive limitations imposed by traditional values and ways of life, access to a wider field of possibilities constrained by rigorous moral boundries,ethical peculiar and cultural values, while Islam condemns rigorously non –welcoming attitude towards a female child.
When news is brought to one of them, of (the birth of) a female (child), his face darkens, and he is filled with inward grief! With shame does he hide himself from his people, because of the bad news he has had! Shall he retain it on (sufferance and) contempt, or bury it in the dust? Ah! what an evil (choice) they decide on? (Q,16:58-59)
and as( Walt Whitman) so eloquently stated, ,if anything is sacred, the human body is sacred. (The children of Adam(1872).
Discrimination against women begins with the day , she opens her eyes to see the world, discriminatory process manifests itself, in access to health and education , upbringing boys and girls, denied relevance to the male child, social processes chained her more effectively as soon as she comes of the age male domination extends in the form of early and forced marriages, exchange marriages and exclusion from participation in decision making. There are various factors that perpetuate domestic violence, cultural/ traditional dogmas, economic dependency, legal status of women, role of women in power politics and policy making.
Interfamily violence, is most frequent and normal practice , encompassing multidimensional processes, more visible and immediate to our everyday life is honor killing, the symptoms of which interpreted in, refusal to submit to arrange marriage, demanding a divorce, feud settling, get rid of wife. Moreover, the murder relates to inheritances problems. Interfamily violence is of many kinds may be categorized as, acid burning, karo-kari, bride burning,( dowry, conflicts with in-laws, extra marital relationship in both sides) Vani, honor killing, vulvur, rape, marriage with Quran, child- hood marriage, fear of division of property denied females right to marry Adams,( Carol J.; Fortune, Mary M.) (1998). Violence against women and children: a Christian Theological Sourcebook. New York: The Continuum Publishing Company. Pages 428-9. ISBN 0-8264-0830-3
Strauss, 1974, considers patterns of interfamily violence an abstract metaphor, outgrown of social or psychological pathology, though part of the social action, often normal but qualitatively frequent, statistically rigorous, culturally approved by the perpetrator is a part of conflict in the social relationship, including family, in the street or between nations.
Failure to recognized ilemmas facing women provoked a serious discourse, even modern values of freedom, justice, equality and democracy fail to maintain or seriously granting parityto women. Gender based violence have taken as an integrated approach to eliminate violence as UN secretary general 2006, recognized it as an international insecurity perspective and relating it to peace and security, encourage women role as participation in conflict resolution and peace building.
(The hunger project) while stressing women empowerment as key change agent, discloses facts that vast majority of theworld’s poor are women, two thirds of the worlds illiterate population are female, of the millions of school age children, not in school, the majority are girls.
In South Asian perspective, women , very greatly across and within both context and that what is understood as violence is fundamentally linked with power, reproducing gender relations, (Silvie Bovarnick).
In Pakistan violence against women is embedded in complex mechanism of interplaying factors including ethnicity, social class, geographical location, culture and religion through which gender subordination is legitimized .Traditional and cultural practices under the guise of cultural and social conformism and religious belief, women suffer harmful and life threatening effects, the magnitude of the violence, have various dimensions, the most prevalent among them is, killing in the name of honors, the most effective tool to softened the legal course, which is already silent in this respect.
During 1997 more than 300 women have been made victim of honor killing, in just one province( in reality the numbers are higher than reported, and( reported
as suicides and accidents).The victim suffered, the victim survivors forced to remain in custody fearing death at the hands of the family, according to Aurat Foundations findings, 227 cases of honor killings were reported in Punjab in 2013. According to UN statistics of the 5000 cases reported internationally ,1000 each are from Pakistan and India. Non _governmental organizations put the number at 20,000, four times the figure of UN.
The latest death, s in the name of honor reported as,the latest story in the series of honor killing, a Pakistani couple tied up and killed with butcher knives, for marrying against the wishes of the bride’s family. Muafia Bibi,17 and her 30-years-old husband, Sajjad Ahmad were killed in a village in Punjab province, couples throats were slit before a crowd. Brides fathercommented, even children should stay, they should learn what would happen to them, if they married someone of their own choice.
The brutal murder of the couple in Sialkot indicates that there is no let up in incidents of honors killing wrote AounSahi. One of the resident of the Satrah village disclosed 15 girls of the same village have already left their homes to marry men of their choice. Most of the people of that miserable village support the murder. Khawer Mumtaz, Chairperson National Commission on the status of women, categorically disclosed that making laws would not help solely, it is the question of brutal mind set which needs radical change.she stressed that the people of Satrah village need to ponder on why 15 or 16 girls reached a point of no return.
Muzammil Bibi, 21,s case is the latest in a string of murders, that have sparked revulsion around the world, and clerics, issued a fatwa against honor killing. A Pakistani women killed by the man, she asked to save her from family,s honor killing, despite protection from the boy she loved, found slumped under a tree.(Washington Post).
Dowry related violence, which killed more than 5,000 women annually by their husbands and in-laws, even though India has legally abolished the institution, an average of five women a day are burned and many more go unreported, the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan reports that at least four women deaths are reported in accidental kitchen fires, deaths by kitchen fires usually resulted for the un fulfilled dowry demands by the in-laws. Acid attacks are another cheap and easily accessible violence to disfigure and sometime resulted in deaths for multiple causes, such as family feuds’, dowry demands. Early marriage* a form of violence, which undermines health , education and employment opportunities for girls, by hampering the female involvement and women participation, countries are eroding human capital and human development.
What is to be done? Where to start? How to eliminate violence against women? Human rights, the declaration, emphasized the equality with certain inalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, the discourse on human rights stress on its universality, while it focused only on the human rights of men. This have stimulated a debate, universality of the human rights have been challenged that how the diversity may be accommodative top address the women grievances. The next most compatible question explicate, that how far Human Right discourse would be help full in addressing violence against women in non western context, and secondly how compatible local discourses construct violence that how the socio_cultural norms and traditions compatible with humanrights? The legal and political concept of human rights were developed mainly in France, England, and the US, through the philosophic and legal writing of Grotius, Locke, Montesquieu and Jefferson.(Silvie Bovarnic).
How far in Asian context, Human Rights concept would be use full in addressing violence against women? Is there any relationship? I must say there is a strong relationship between the Western concept of the Human Rights and the Islamic concept, they are relevant, in their substance, subject matter, integrity and validity is concerned. Islam, in its broader practice, predominantly recognizes the social behavior is divinely mandated, both men and women are the protectors of another life is sacred trust, right to life and security in particular acknowledge in these words, “If any one kills a person, it is as if he kills all mankind”.
The central thesis remains the same, The Pakistani women and her status in this era of globalization, there has been no qualitative change and did not have a direct relevance to her lives, as globalization brought a comprehensive transformation to our lives.
The main parameters of globalization can be traced as multidimensional processes transforming many arenas of ideology, economy, politics, and culture. Globalization in the cultural arena is more visible and immediate to oureveryday life, through music, fashion, food, films, and mass media, these changes are supported by technological innovations in the area of information and communication technology.(Dong-Sook S. GILLS2002).
However, the new environment of global communication developed global networking, and the dialectic nature which can generate tool of resistance and organization.Illustrating globalization, as a set of dynamic social and cultural change the women of Pakistan remained the victim of perceived tradition and dogmas, the dynamics of social, cultural change did not emerge as a practical tool of resistance, women are all often and frequently the most vulnerable and the most exploited even during this era of radical changes.
The political economy of globalization in which Asian women are becoming the part and continues to play a crucial role in the contemporary liberalization and restructuring economies in both urban and rural context. it appears that tendency to suppression continues, from domestic violence to economic reductionism, from honor killing to labor victimization,they simply looses the potential as an instrument of change, denied systematically to become a social force capable enough to protect their own interest.
What counts most is ,whether globalization brought a significant change in the lives of the Pakistani women or the global occurring excluded her from the processes ofdevelopment .While The idea of the politics of inclusion, defines the dynamics of development depends only by the inclusion of social forces, which ultimately decrease social inequalities, polarization and marginalization(Gills,2002).
The processes of inclusion also focus on the inclusion of the weak majority rather than the strong minority, democracy requires structural changes to exacerbate the processes of exclusion of a broad spectrum of social forces in to the decision making processes.
(RobertCox,s1987),term this the internationalizing of the state in which gender hierarchy, national and foreign capital how the state adapt to the forces of economic globalization and how to expose women to diverse mechanism of exploitation.
One of our young faculty member Dr Hussain, suggested, that solutions may be sought within the society to which we are the part, contrary to this might not resolve the ongoing conflict.
To my point, it is (honorkilling),is pre_islamic mind set, pre- Islamic societies, where female child were being buried alive, the underlying structure cultural and symbolic manifestations, which reveal the, violence and brutality, appear to be the purely cultural process. Honor associated with the female member of the family the central logic was to maintain male domination, accounted for and explained within the frame work of intense jealousy and fear of being shamed, reason s for infanticide , and they dispose of girls one after the other .
Is ongoing onslaught against women a revival of pre –Islamic infanticide? Thus in turn brings social exclusion, in reality due to underlying social inequalities, as such processes result in the brutal experiences of victimization. The privileged position of men ensures to confine, fair and equal treatment rather goes beyond humanism to a large.
I was doing my MS in political science, when the teen aged daughter of our land lord attempted suicide, daughter of a rich fish harbour trollers, so afraid of his father, knowing that a house keeper child servent, reported daily his father about her telephonic conversation with a boy of her liking, the day, she knew, before her father back home, she took her life to be victimized by her father. Her mother was on her visiting visa t0 USA to see her two sons settled there. It was a fateful day, we took her to the hospital, she expired on her way to hospital. I could not forget the tragic death of that innocent girl, even after many years.
How institutions could help to contain violence against women?
A number of theorist documented structural inequality is basically gender oriented in equality, a resistant to women emancipation and therefore is a durable inequality. ( PierreBordieu) directed us towards the salient paradigm, culture may be thoroughly analyzed, that male domination is rooted so deeply in our culture that it is almost difficult to challenge it, and symbolic violence usually perpetrated via the symbolic channels of communications and knowledge. Sylvia Wallaby (1990)discussed the structural determinants , which determine the position of women in the societies other than culture, such as domestic labor, Wage labor reproductive role. Culture, voilence, and the role of the state. which in turn have the durability and theorizing patriarchy” or in this era of globalization referred to as gender orders, or” gender regimes.”To him the core requirement for the gender equality is to locate or more accurately its absence. Moreover violence against women, itself is an expression of inequality that it is relevant to other inequalities, and is significant in it.
Kofi Anan, commented, violence against women is perhaps the most shameful human rights violation, and it is perhaps the most pervasive. It knows no boundaries of geography, culture or wealth. As long as it continues, we cannot claim to be to be making real progress towards equality, development and peace (1999).
Violence against women is not limited to domestic violence it is rather encompassed into various directions, such as forced child marriage, honor killing, work place harassment. Violence thread occupies women, s life also through social contexts, more vulnerable to violence such as conflict, dislocation ,living in a residential institution not only provide extra opportunities for violence but also reduces the chances of detection, a constraint, further limits the mobility, access to resources and basic activities. How violence perpetuate women life cycle, Heyse .L.(1994), divides the life cycle of women correlates it with particular age and type of violence.
- Phase Type of violence.
- Prenatal Gender selection, physical assault during pregnancy.
- Infancy Female infanticide, domestic violence, access to food, medical care denied.
- Child hood Forced child hood marriage, forced labor, denied opportunities to education including access to food and healthcare.
Adolescence Harassment at school and in the street, femicide(the act of killing a woman) forced marriage, crimes in the name of honor killing, intimate partner violence rape and assault by the relatives.
Adulthood Harassment at work and in public place, intimate partner violence, rape and physical assault, femicide, bride burning, dowry and bride price crimes, exploitation and trafficking.
Old age Elder abuse, intimate partner violence, rape, abuse of widows, harassment in public place, institutional abuse.
What is astonishing about women’s various age phases and the kind of violence, she experiences throughout her life , the violence against her is not perpetrated by the unknown or strangers but very close to her, trusted and intimate to whom she expects, love , honor, identity and dignity.
How violence attributed to women’s life and physical, psychological harms implicate to her life, according to WHO at least five of women lost healthy years of life due to violence and many women lost their lives due to violence, and legacies of violence, undermine women in the workplace and systematically harm women in public domain and to contribute in the decision_ making.Moreover social relations and social support are primarily understood in terms of gender as male dominating society possess more formal networks as compare to female. They lack autonomy to think about their safety, and use time for creative activities, the capacity to use leisure time for productive activities, the way the violence limits women, mobility and denying her to use her potential, is both,acause and an outcome of women,s inequality.
As( LizKelly )rightfully analysed, violence against women has direct and indirect connections to continued agony, establish disparities in employment, health, well-being and political representation
Question arises that if all societies agreed including ours that, violence against women categorically has relative independence from other aspects, and one of the driving force the in equality concept therefore generate the micro-inequalities of every -day life.
What is to be done?
The most important is the culture, structure, norms, traditions, the century old biradari system, the family unit, parent child relationship( especially female child).The old dogmas that honor , basically is associated with female child, and her individual and social behavior strictly monitored by the male members of the family. A born lack of confidence as a form of systematic discrimination jeopardizes women, s lives, explicitly impairs their human rights and as, Beijing Declaration in 1995 declares, women are subjected to a greater or lesser degree, to all sorts of violence including physical and psychological legacies of violence are profound with considerable energy , common to every society that cuts across lines of income, class and culture.
Fear of violence remains a constant haunt which limits or rather diminish women,s access to resources and basic activities, while no women is safe, access to support, protection and justice are socially excluded from her range.Halima Rafiq,s death , creating a virtual impunity, a legitimized violence in specific circumstances holding the 17 years old female criketer took her life, makes the incident neither a rare or random but unfortunately frequent and latest addition of gender relations added into the fabric of every- day life.
AmatyaSen,s capability approach to gender equality, reveals, what is at issue is not only access to resources but freedom to live a valuable life – what one is able to do and be.Dignity and treated with dignity is the basic human rights , worth and dignity is continuously at stake and compromised to the benefit of men. Moreover, the society where are extensive and increasingly legitimized rights to males, gender ideology dominates, to what extent a women can claim respect and dignity, in a society where she is treated as a thing , a commodity and where abuse her becomes acceptable.
In Islamic perspective, religion give space and is implicated and extends safety, dignity and extensive human rights, to women first time in the history of man-kind. Unfortunately, the recent history of the Islamic societies, demonstrated the legacies of pre-Islamic mind –set as the violence against women is increasing and continuously becoming the part of our daily life, from the domestic violence to public life, unequal treatment implicit direct and indirect connections with theviolence against women in a systematic and consistent ways that it has become both a cause and an outcome of inequality concept
Against women further comprehend in the disparities in employment, pay and political participation. What counts most is the social change, a meaningful structural change, characterized by the convergence of opposition to social inequalities instrumental to promote gender ideology and increasing social inequalities, polarization and marginalization.
Countries like Pakistan, where violence is incorporated, in its every form, lack of effective national laws and failure to implement such laws resulted in impunity for violence against women, priority required to bring significant change, government, leadership and critical political will is needed to fight against women. Role of police and judiciary is crucial in this regard and Pakistan is one of those countries, where police is burdened by corruption, lack of training, political pressures, criminals status force them to act either side. Justice delayed is justice denied, true in our case, that judiciary remained controversial in many recent cases of violence against women.
What is to be done? A dedicated campaign by the society and community and village, by the government and NGO, increasing efforts are needed to change attitudes, and influence behavior.
Methods and Materials.
- Participatory Observation.
- Discussions with the faculty members.
- Literature Review.
- Bibliography & References.
Bibliography & References.
1 Maithreyi Krishnaraj
2 Judy ELBushra &Eugenia Piza.
3Dr Leila Ahmad.
4Q ,30; 21.
5 Q ,2: 187.
- Mahnaz Afkhani, gender and apartheid and cultural relativism,
- The USconference of Catholic Bishops on violence against women inside and outside home in 2002.
- Steven Tracy,(2007)Patriarchy and domestic violence :challenging common Misconceptions: Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society:50(3):580_583.
- Adams, Carol J;Fortune,MaryM.(1998).Voilence against women and children: A christian Theological Source book NewYork.The continuum Publishing Company. Pages 428-9.
- James WPrescot,3/41995.
- The poet AttiyaDawood.
- Document: Pakistan Honor Killing of women.
- Shehnaz Bokhari,Progressive Women Association Report 1999.
- HRCP,s annual report 1983.
- HRCP, launched campaign to stop violence against women during 1990.
- Silvie Bovarnic,
- Jean,Trounstine, The forgotten Minority
- Arvonnes Fraser.
- 21 Julieta Kirkwood.
- UNICEF Report.21 Julieta Kirkwood
- Noor Jehan N.G Ganihar, Gender issues and Women Empowerment, DiscoveryPub lashingHouse New Delhi,2007.p .1.
- TheUnited Nations Declaration@General Assembly,s resolution, December 1993.
- Sumita Parmer’sarticle, AccessingEmpowerment: Contemporary Indian Women, edited by Chrishna Gupta,p:32.
- Tracqui True,
- The children of Adam(1872).
- Carol J;Fortune, Mary M.1998
- Strauss, 1974.
- UN secretary general declared in 2006.
- The hunger project.
- Silvie Bovarnick.
- UN Report, 2013.
- Washington Post.
- HRC of Pakistan reports.
- Silvie Bovarnic.
- Adapted from Heise,L.1994.6
- Dong-SOOK-S.Gills. 2002
- Robert Cox, s.1987.
- Sylvia Wallaby.1990.
- Kofi Anan, 1999.
- Heise, L .1994.
- WHO report.
- Liz Kelly.
- Beijing Declaration 1995.
Article Type: Journal Article
Author: Dr. Philemon Sengati
Dr. Philemon Sengati
The University of Dodoma
P.O. Box 395, Dodoma- Tanzania
This paper argues the fact that, whatever circumstances come on, Tanzania stands as a strategic actor with unique status in the development and prosperity of the East African Community. This position is built on a variety of premises, one of which are, the records of Tanzania in the struggle to build unity, equality, true democracy and peace among nations in Africa, thus the Great Lakes Region and the East Africa community. There are numerous instances to justify this assertive position, such as Tanzania has been the designated honest broker in crisis prone regions of Kenya, Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Comoro and Uganda at different phases in its existence as a state.
Again Tanzania strategic position is vibrant in the growth potential of the economy of Rwanda, DRC, and Uganda; this is reflected by the strategic geographical location in serving other countries in the region. Tanzania is the heart of EAC transport network, in sense that four out of the five transport corridors start from Tanzania to EAC countries. The existence of sea ports (Dar es Salaam, Mtwara and Tanga and one is in plan to be constructed in Bagamoyo) dependable by the EAC for economic activities like importations and transportation of goods in their destinations consolidate the fact. More importantly Tanzania is a country that has sustainable peace situation as such for years it never entered into war rather peaceful coexistence amongst Tanzanians and its neighbors has been its tradition. In this paper we argue that, despite of the challenges that the EAC faces, Tanzania has a vital status in its development and prosperity of which citizens and leaders at local, national, regional and international levels have to uphold and nurture.
2.0 Key words
Regional Integration, Strategic Position, the East African Community.
African frontrunners have long recognized the need for closer regional connections as a way to overcome the fragmentation of the continent which is one of the major constrictions toward its economic development. The economic integration of Africa was the central theme of the 1980 Lagos Plan of Action, the special United Nations Session on Africa in 1986 and numerous other high level statements and reports on African policy and development strategy (Ojo et al., 1985). It is no doubt that, more recently the dreams have found expression in the creation of the African Union and regional and sub-regional integration.
In view of that, Sub-regional and regional groupings is a dominating agenda to the attainment of socioeconomic, political development; the approaches complements as necessary for improving Africa’s competitiveness, mindful of the fact that as most African countries are small by standing independently in terms of their domestic markets (EAC Annual Trade Report, 2008). In line with the vision and objectives of the region, East African Community was formed to create a well-connected, economically prosperous and peaceful region by supporting both public and private sector engaged in the regional integration process (Munster, 2009).
Five countries in the region (Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda) constitute the EAC. The Permanent Tripartite Commission for East African Co-operation was first formed in 1967, but collapsed in 1977 due to political differences among the participating countries; again it was re-established in January 2001 by a Treaty, which entered into force on 7 July 2000. Burundi and Rwanda joined the Community on 18 June 2007.
“One people, one destiny” – so runs the slogan of the East African Community (EAC), which was re-established through signing of the EAC treaty on 30th November, 1999 and came into force in 2001. The future conceived EAC will comprise 13 countries including: Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Seychelles, Somalia, Sudan, Uganda and Tanzania as of 9 July 2011, the newly-independent Republic of South-Sudan. It draws on the analyses and conclusions of various sector studies and benefits from discussions with the country and regional stakeholders (Heinz, 2005). At the same time, it pays close attention to specific concerns in the region such as fragility, insecurity, cross-border conflicts, governance challenges, as well as cross-cutting issues related to gender, the environment and climate change.
The EAC is a key driver of the regional integration process and has achieved positive results, including a common market status in July 2010. The target date for establishing a monetary union is 2012. The vision of EAC is to create a prosperous, competitive, secure and politically united Eastern Africa. The objective, according to Article 5 (1) of the Treaty, is to develop policies and programs aimed at widening and deepening cooperation among the partner states in political, economic, social and cultural fields, research and technology, defence, security and legal and judicial affairs for mutual benefit (EAC Annual Trade Report, 2008).
The East African Community is organized into different organs provided in the Treaty which formed the integration and are found in Chapter III Article 9(1) of the union Charter. These organs include, the Summit of the EAC that consists of the Heads of State of the Partner States and at present these are:
“ President Pierre Nkurunzinza of Burundi, President Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, President Dr. John Pombe Magufuli of Tanzania, and President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni of Uganda”. The five presidents take the chair of the summit in turns of one year and the present chairperson of the Summit is Dr. John Pombe Magufuli of Tanzania. It is equally important to unravel that, the Summit meets at least once in a year (Chapter Four Article 10 of the EAC Charter of, 1999).
The other organ of the East African Community is the Council of Ministers consisting of the ministers for regional co-operation of each Partner State and other ministers to be determined by the Partner States. The Council of Ministers meets twice a year; one of the meetings is held immediately preceding a Summit Meeting (Chapter Five Article 13 Charter of the East African Community). In connection to this organ, there is a Co-ordination Committee consists of the Permanent Secretaries responsible for regional co-operation in each Partner State. It reports to the Council of Ministers and co-ordinates the activities of the Sectorial Committees (The EAC Charter of 1999, Chapter 6 (Article 17).
There is another organ called Sectorial Committees of the EAC which reports to the Co-ordination Committee and are established by the Council of Ministers. Their task is to prepare programmes and to implement the objectives of the Treaty (Chapter 7 (Article 18) of the 1999 Charter of the EAC). Another organ is the East African Court of Justice has the major responsibility to ensure the adherence to law in the interpretation and application of and compliance with the Treaty. This includes for example disputes between Partner States regarding the Treaty, disputes between the Community and its employees or the compliance of national laws with the Treaty (Chapter 8 (Article 23) of the 1999 EAC Charter).
The East African Legislative Assembly is the Parliament of the East African Community. It has 52 members – nine members from each Partner State – plus 7 ex-officio members, namely the five Ministers responsible for regional co-operation, the Secretary General and the Counsel to the Community (Chapter 9 (Article 48) of the 1999 EAC Charter). The Secretariat is the executive organ of the EAC and runs the day-to-day business. It is headed by the Secretary General. He is supported by four Deputy Secretary Generals who deputies for him and have the following special responsibilities. The Counsel to the Community is appointed by the Council of Ministers and acts as the principal legal adviser to the Community. The Counsel is also entitled to appear in the Courts of the Partner States in matters regarding the Community and its Treaty (Chapter 10 (Article 66) of the 1999 EAC Charter).
There are other autonomous institutions with special responsibilities to perform in the EAC, one of which is the Lake Victoria Basin Commission, this oversees the management and development of Lake Victoria Basin and serves as a centre for promotion of investments and information sharing among the various stakeholders. Its headquarters are situated in Kisumu, Kenya. The other institution is Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization (LVFO), this coordinates fishery issues in Lake Victoria to ensure that fish and fish products are available in East Africa and has access to international markets (Chapter Four Article 10 of the EAC Charter of 1999).
The other institution is called Inter-University Council of East Africa (IUCEA),
IUCEA encourages and develops mutual beneficial collaboration between member universities and Governments and other public and private organizations.
East African Development Bank (EADB). EADB was established in 1967 to redress the development disparities between the member states of the former East African Community. EADB has a critical role to play in setting up the East African Common Market in terms of mobilising external lendable resources for the East African Market. Civil Aviation Safety and Security Oversight Agency (CASSOA).CASSOA is a specialized agency of the East Community responsible for ensuring the development of safe and secure civil aviation system in the region. The main objectives of the Agency are to ensure coordinated development of an effective and sustainable civil aviation safety and security oversight infrastructure in the Community (Chapter Four Article 10 of the EAC Charter of 1999).
4.0 The Predicament on board
There are initiatives to promote a strong and well founded East African Community among member states like creation of customs union, common market and an EAC legislative. In 2013, the diplomatic rifts between President Kagame of Rwanda and former Tanzanian president Jakaya Kikwete constrained and retarded these efforts.
President Kikwete had suggested – during an auspicious AU Summit in Addis – which Kigali should negotiate with the rebels based in the DR Congo. The Summit then had serious security issues facing the continent on the table, including the running instability in eastern DR Congo. Conversely, in an interview with Radio France International (RFI), on 4th June, 2013 Rwanda’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Louise Mushi Kiwabo said Rwanda will not consider negotiating with people who were responsible for the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi.
“Those who think that Rwanda today should sit down at the negotiating table with FDLR simply don’t know what they are talking about,” she said, adding that it was unfortunate that the rebel group had sympathizers in the region, including President Kikwete himself, should he not retract his comments.” (The Guardian 8th June, 2013).
There are many spokespeople for the FDLR; some are ideologically aligned to the FDLR. We stopped the genocide but we didn’t stop the ideology,” she added. Tanzania categorically said it won’t apologize over remarks by President Jakaya Kikwete, and reiterated its call upon Rwandan authorities to initiate peace talks with rebels of the Democratic Liberation Forces of Rwanda (FDLR) (The Guardian 8th June, 2013).
Of recent years, the presidents of Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda met in Kigali for the third time, in what came to be known as “the coalition of the willing.” this brought a negative view on which media went on commenting that perhaps the new EAC could go back to its old history of 1977. Still Tanzania used its diplomatic strategy to make the situation cool by upholding the vision and principles of regional integration. When addressing the nation, on his monthly speech former President Kikwete affirmed to Tanzanians that Tanzania will take the last position to go out the EAC community, by the time it will use any diplomatic means to make sure all things are calm and bring positive results in the community.
“Tanzania will never quit the East African Community and will do everything in its power to make sure the community survives and becomes prosperous despite efforts by Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda to side-line it……. We are in the EAC to stay. We have come from so far. We have sacrificed so much to give up now. We will do everything in our power to make sure the EAC survives and achieve its ultimate goal of political federation,” President Kikwete told the Parliament. (Daily News 7, Nov. 2013).
Tanzania is currently endeavouring to improve its cooperation with Governments and with regional organizations, this is concomitant with Tanzania strategy towards integration where it believes that the key player in the EAC must be driven by clear vision and political will and be guided by four “Cs” namely Communication, Commitment, Cooperation and Completion.
While situation is not calm between Tanzania and Rwanda the United Nation passed special resolution No 2098 of 2013 to send a special peace keeping force in the Eastern DRC, a special zone for Rwandese interest as conceived by different scholars (Sengati, 2014; Mpangala, 2004; Rummel, 1995 and Rupiya, 2005). That the region is full of mineral potential but a conflict Zone with M23 and FDLR rebel groups causing chaos and alleged supported by the Rwanda government. This UN special force is largely composed of Tanzanian soldiers, this has increased hostility between Tanzania and Rwanda, because the initiative to forcing out all rebel groups in Eastern DRC impliedly mean the call to peace and freedom for the DRC of which jeopardizes the Rwandese dominance and interest especially in mineral resource in the eastern DRC. In this paper we argue that, the development and prosperity of the East African Community is linked to its member commitment. It is of no imagination that Tanzania can be isolated in the move to building a strong East African Federation, because of many reasons but mostly its strategic position is the potential for the development of the EAC.
5.0 Materials and Methods
The materials used in this paper are secondary materials and qualitative methods are employed to describe the strategic status Tanzania has in the opulence of the East African Community. The materials reviewed include the journal articles, books, News Papers, the EAC Charter and paper presented in different forums to enhance validity and reliability of key arguments in the article. The analysis of the information is done by using a thematic method that is used in qualitative research data analysis.
6.0 Theoretical and Empirical debates
The theory of regional integration has been associated with Haas (1950) a prominent neo-functionalist known for his concept of “The uniting of Europe”. This is because Europe remained the focal point for most of the works on regional integration theory although in the recent past the application of integration theory to Latin America, Africa and Asia has increased. Haas and Schmitter developed a conceptual framework that has spread the process of regional integration beyond Europe in industrial and non-industrial settings with a concept approach that is applicable to both. The basic postulation of neo functionalists is the decline of nationalism and nation-states and their replacing by large units more suited for the roles they play in society. The neo functionalist thus does not see nation-states as units of analysis but the whole region as a unit. Modern neo-functionalist who were inspired by European integration still exist and put emphasis on supranational institutions, among them are Sandholz and Sweet (1997) and multilevel governance, Marks, Hooghe and Blank (1996) among the opponents of regional integration was Haas himself, Lindberg and Scheingold. This was after the European integration process started to experience a crisis in the mid 1960s. Haas and these scholars concluded that his theory was too deterministic and Haas admitted that he had not foreseen a rebirth of nationalism and resilience of sovereign nation-states within functionalist organization of supra-national institutions referred to as regionalism.
Lindberg and Scheingold singled out some of the major mechanisms and dynamics. It was concluded that neo-functionalists had not studied domestic politics sufficiently and that they could have exaggerated the role of supranational institutions The other opponent of neo-functionalism is Pieson, Pollock (1996), Scheneider and Aspinwall (2011) who used the new institutionalism approach to integration studies. According to Pierson there are gaps that emerge among the member states which are difficult to close. These gaps are created by autonomous action of integration institutions, the restricted time horizons of political decisions makers, unanticipated consequences and shifts in policy preferences of governments. This makes the gaps very difficult to close because of the reluctance of supranational actors, institutional barriers to reform and various costs to change. Due to this gaps and the difficulty in closing them, Pieson, Pollock and Scheneider and Aspinwall argue that this forms the foundation of disintegration rather than integration. Therefore these authors see nothing than disintegration as states pursue their own agenda defined as state interest among community of states. This disintegration and the consequent pursued by individual interest is therefore a source of disharmony since it is equivalent to a chaotic state of nature. With this state of nature, states are likely to disagree and by extension war erupts. The war is a war in a whole community of states. As states push and shove over their interests, there is likely war in the whole community while in the individual states, there will be peace. This in Nye phrase is the “peace in parts”. The parts are individual states which internally are at peace but externally in relation to other states are not, as each state attempts to promote and protect its own self interests, there is no peace i.e. the states are in a state of war always in their protection and promotion of self interest. Nye’s thesis rests on rather simple question of how there can be integration as proposed by neo-functionalists when there is no peace in the whole but only in the parts. Rather how can the peace existent in parts be utilized to guarantee peace in the whole. Simply how can states be at peace while they all pursue their own self interest in the same environment? This according to Nye’s thesis is impossibility. This theory is relevant because it talks about collective decision making. Policies in EAC are determined by consensus which covers a varying number of functional areas. Ernst Haas came up with the concept of spillover which “refers to a situation in which a given action, related to specific goals, creates a situation in which the original goals can be assured only after taking further actions, which in turn create a further condition and a need for more action and so forth”60. This refers to policies that are agreed upon and the partner states need to implement them for the prosperity and continuous existence of the integration.
Liberalism is the theory related with the formation of the East African Community. Liberals argue that the universal condition of world politics is globalization. States are, and always have been, embedded in a domestic and transnational society, which creates incentives for economic, social and cultural interaction across borders. State policy may facilitate or block such interactions. Some domestic groups may benefit from or be harmed by such policies, and they pressure government accordingly for policies that facilitate realization of their goals. These social pressures, transmitted through domestic political institutions, define “state preferences” –that is, the set of substantive social purposes that motivate foreign policy (Hurrel, 1995).
State preferences give governments an underlying stake in the international issues they face. Since the domestic and transnational social context in which states are embedded varies greatly across space and time, so do state preferences. Without such social concerns that transcend state borders, states would have no rational incentive to engage in world politics at all, but would simply devote their resources to isolated existence. To motivate conflict, cooperation, or any other costly foreign policy action, states must possess sufficiently intense state preferences. The resulting globalization-induced variation in social demands, and thus state preferences, is a fundamental cause of state behavior in world politics (Durgesh, 1984). This is the central insight of liberal international relations theory. It can be expressed colloquially in various ways: “What matters most is what states want, not how they get it- “Ends are more important than means.”
Three specific variants of liberal theory are defined by particular types of preferences, their variation, and their impact on state behavior. Ideational liberal theories link state behavior to varied conceptions of desirable forms of cultural, political, socioeconomic order. Commercial liberal theories stress economic interdependence, including many variants of “endogenous policy theory.” Republican liberal theories stress the role of domestic representative institutions, elites and leadership dynamics, and executive-legislative relations. Such theories were first conceived by prescient liberals such as Immanuel Kant, Adam Smith, John Stuart Mill, John Hobson, Woodrow Wilson, and John Maynard Keynes-writing well before the deep causes (independent variables) they stress (e.g. democratization, industrialization, nationalism, and welfare provision) were widespread (Duncan, 2008)
What basic assumptions underlie the liberal approach? Two assumptions liberal theory makes are the assumptions of anarchy and rationality. Specifically, states (or other political actors) exist in an anarchic environment and they generally act in a broadly rational way in making decisions. The anarchy assumption means that political actors exist in the distinctive environment of international politics, without a world government or any other authority with a monopoly on the legitimate use of force. They must engage in self-help. The rationality assumption means that state leaders and their domestic supporters engage in foreign policy for the instrumental purpose of securing benefits provided by (or avoiding costs imposed by) actors outside of their borders, and in making such calculations, states seek to deploy the most cost-effective means to achieve whatever their ends (preferences) may be (Daniel,1984).
Liberal theory shares the first (anarchy) assumption with almost all international relations theories, and it shares the second (rationality) assumption with realism and institutionalism, but not non-rationalist process theories. The second core assumption shared by liberal theories is that the interdependence among of state preferences influences state behavior. Rather than treating preferences as a fixed constant, as do realists or institutionalists, liberals seek to explain variation in preferences and its significance for world politics. The precise distribution and nature of the “stakes” explains differences in state policy and behavior (Willis, K. 2005).
States, liberals argue, orient their behavior to the precise nature of these underlying preferences: compatible or conflictual, intense or weak, and their precise scope. States require a “social purpose” a perceived underlying stake in the matter at hand in order to pay any attention to international affairs, let alone to provoke conflict, inaugurate cooperation, or take any other significant foreign policy action. If there is no such interdependence among state objectives, a rational state will conduct no international relations, satisfying itself with an isolated and autarkic existence. Conflictual goals increase the incentive for political disputes. Convergence of underlying preferences creates the preconditions for peaceful coexistence or cooperation (Duncan, 2008).
Rational choice Theory is also one of the theories related with the formation of East African Community. An economic principle that assumes that individuals always make prudent and logical decisions that provide them with the greatest benefit or satisfaction and that are in their highest self-interest. Most mainstream economic assumptions and theories are based on rational choice theory (Ojo et al. 1985)
Indeed, the East African Community might have put in perspectives rational choice theory in devising coercive apparatuses among member states such like the Interpol-to crack down criminality beyond borders. The road map into the formation of East African Monetary fund is related with the concept of rational choice theory which looks into maximizing members’ states advantage or gain, and to minimize their disadvantage or loss.
Realism is the last theory in the analysis of the formation of East African Community. Descriptive political realism commonly holds that the international community is characterized by anarchy, since there is no overriding world government that enforces a common code of rules. Whilst this anarchy need not be chaotic, for various member states of the international community may engage in treaties or in trading patterns that generate an order of sorts, most theorists conclude that law or morality does not apply beyond the nation’s boundaries (Holst, 1990).
Arguably political realism supports Hobbes’s view of the state of nature, namely that the relations between self-seeking political entities are necessarily a-moral. Hobbes asserts that without a presiding government to legislate codes of conduct, no morality or justice can exist: “Where there is no common Power, there is no Law, no justice if there be no power erected, or not great enough for our security; every man will and may lawfully rely on his own strength and art, for caution against all other men. In this case integration of countries is the best strategies to enforce moral behaviors or acts amongst actors within regional agreements (Pentland, 1973).
Either descriptive political realism is true or it is false. If it is true, it does not follow, however, that morality ought not to be applied to international affairs; what ought to be does not always follow from what is. A strong form of descriptive political realism maintains that nations are necessarily self-seeking, that they can only form foreign policy in terms of what the nation can gain, and cannot, by their very nature, cast aside their own interests.
However, if descriptive realism is held, it is as a closed theory, which means that it can refute all counter-factual evidence on its own terms (for example, evidence of a nation offering support to a neighbor as an ostensible act of altruism, is refuted by pointing to some self-serving motive the giving nation presumably has it would increase trade, it would gain an important ally, it would feel guilty if it didn’t, and so on), then any attempt to introduce morality into international affairs would prove futile (Breen, and Rittman, 1995).
Examining the soundness of descriptive political realism depends on the possibility of knowing political motives, which in turn means knowing the motives of the various officers of the state and diplomats. The complexity of the relationship between officers’ actions, their motives, subterfuge, and actual foreign policy makes this a difficult if not impossible task, one for historians rather than philosophers. Logically, the closed nature of descriptive realism implies that a contrary proposition that nations serve no interests at all, or can only serve the interests of others, could be just as valid.
Realism under the East African Community hinges on the assumption that some leaders, because of their ethnic background, would always think of remaining in power and controlling others. It has been assumed that President Museveni and Kagame belong to Tutsi ethnic background. The motive behind Tutsi generation is hegemonic power. They (Tutsi) have a propensity of ruling others forever and evermore. Example of tyrannical utterance once put forward by Museveni justifies this contention.
President Museveni has been in power for almost 28 consecutive years 40 per cent of his lifetime. Given the country’s very young population, 75 per cent of Ugandans have only had one president all their life. When asked if he would run again in 2016, Museveni’s response was, “one of the real points for me politically is the East African Federation. I cannot leave this issue if I think there is a possibility of advancing it. This is something I have been working for all my time in politics and is one of the reasons why I continue to be in power (The guardian 17 August 2015)
This is the classic case of a leader thinking that he is indispensable, a very dangerous mind-set for democracy. In 2011, when President Museveni was asked how he would react if Ugandans contested election results with demonstrations, Museveni responded that “we just lock them up … bundle them into jail and bring them to the courts.” There you have it – a theoretical model for democracy.
The maturation of region integration elsewhere in Africa is engulfed by both optimists and pessimists leaders, and scholars. Empirically there are vast literature by both African and Africanist scholars which point out a dark picture about the prospects of getting it right in terms of bringing together different countries in a specific region in Africa. Dieter (1997) for example, writes: “in Africa, attempt to create regional integration prospect have a long, albeit discouraging history”. Odhiambo (1981) writing specifically about East Africa, shares the same view by arguing that: “when it comes to the question of African attempts at territorial politics, the experience is one of failure, or alternatively of inability”. There are a few other scholars who concur with this trajectory (Hentz, 2005) writes: “Thus schemes in Africa such as the Economic Community of West African states and the East African Community adopted a blueprint from a very different place and time, and like others such schemes in sub Saharan Africa, they failed”.
These views are credible and can be substantiated by facts. For example west and central African states tried regional integration soon after gaining political independence from European colonizers but all these attempts failed. The French colonies of Mali and Senegal formed a federation but a few months later Senegal seceded from the federation and declared itself as the Republic of Senegal. In other areas Ivory Coast, Dahomey and Niger formed the council of the intent but this too collapsed (Melady, 1961).
Patrice Lumumba of the present day the Democratic Republic of Congo and Kwame Nkrumah once contemplated combing DRC and Ghana, an idea that never materialized. Some of the post independence regional organization includes the West African Economic Community (WAEC) and the central African customs and Economic Union (CACEU), which were established in the 1960s later disintegrated too. Even the Pan African Freedom Movement of East, Central and Southern Africa (PAFMECSA) did not survive due to ideological differences among African leaders and their excitement about their newly found freedom from colonial rule. Thus the argument by the pessimists is tenable and can be substantiated
Increasingly, in spite of these features the spirit of regional integration did not die out amongst Africans. Consequently, when the East African Community territories their political independence in early 1960s they also tried to follow the same route by establishing the East African Community. Unfortunately, like its predecessor organization the EAC’s life was also ephemeral as it collapsed after a single decade. It is in this context therefore that the view expressed by those scholars who state that the African experience with regional integration or territorial politics is one of failure can not be summarily refuted (Veit, 2010).
However it would be wrong to overgeneralized and argue that all attempts to establish regional institutions in post colonial Africa failed because some of these regional organizations are still operational even today. Among these that have survived to date is the ECOWAS, established in 1976. In this paper we stand out to argue that the survival, development and prosperity of the current East African Community is totally dependent on the commitment of its member states to forming the political federation. Uniquely is the strategic status of Tanzania in promoting such development and prosperity within the East African Community.
Musonda (2006) is of the view that, Western European countries started experiencing regionalism in the 1950’s. From these countries, the project of regionalism spread to other parts of the world including Asia, Latin America, and Africa among others. The formation of the European Economic Community EEC and later the signing of the Treaty of Maastricht in 19936 ushered in a big leap as far as European integration was concerned. These were to later emerge as case studies of successful regional integration. The change of name from EEC to EU signified the expansion growth the union was undergoing. These developments were not only political, but also economic, social, cultural and linguistic changes. The institutions created under this community played a significant role in strengthening and buttressing the community to what it is today. That the EU integration is developed to the extend of having a full legal system and jurisprudence is pointer to how successful integration can be. A reference to EU law8 which has become part of comparative legal studies across the world is one such proof. Among the EU laws are legislations on and provisions of the EU treaty on immigration, visa regulation, and free movement of persons within the union9 and outside the union who are citizens of member states or non members. A study of this EU law will reveal the impact of the aforesaid law on integration in the EU.
7.0 Figure 1: CONCETUAL FRAMEWORK:
Source: Authors’ Creativity
The figure 1 shows a conceptual framework with varies variable pointing to the prospect of a strong integrated EAC. The dependent variable in this model are the other members of the EAC currently they include Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Southern Sudan and Burundi, with a future prospective members of Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia and Ethiopia. The dependent variable as argued is a strong and composed EAC with achieved vision of having a common market, custom union, monetary union, and political federation. The key driving force toward success of the respective is having Tanzania as catalysts member to enforce a strong integrated EAC in terms of its potentials in resources, population, political, infrastructure and energy.
8.0 Results and Discussions
8.1 Rationale of the EAC Integration for Tanzania
Reith S. et all (2011) has contended that “country’s neighborhood matters for regional integration and growth spillovers from across borders are among the main benefits of regional integration. In a more integrated economic space, the long-run growth prospects of countries become interlinked as markets of neighboring countries become more accessible”. Kiraso (2010) argues that, when two or more states come together to trade as a block thereby creating a bigger consumer base for their products and services. Thus, growth in neighboring countries enhances domestic growth, which benefits neighbors. This spatial multiplier enhances the rewards to good policy and contributes to convergence in living standards.
The idea that economic integration can promote regional (or global) co-operation among states finds its sources in several theories of International Relations. Neo-functionalism, for instance, which was particularly influential in its time as a theory of European integration, predicted that two kinds of “spillover” would occur to sustain and deepen integration. The first kind of spillover was functional, “whereby partial small initial steps down the integration road would create new problems that could only be solved by further cooperation.” The second kind of spillover was political: “the existence of supranational institutions would set in motion a self-reinforcing process of institution building” (Folayan O. 1975). Tanzania stands for this theory by aspiring to deepening and broadening integration as one important way to contribute to sustained rapid growth and greater poverty reduction for the people of EAC. The end result of integration should be greater inclusiveness among Tanzania and East African people.
According to Binto (2012) in the paper of Ngowi (2009), Tanzania joined different regional integration as an essential plank of their development strategy, and an important ingredient in stimulating increased social, political and economic progress. This is in line with the Treaty of the East African Community (EAC), signed on 30 November 1999, seeks to promote and strengthen the balanced and sustainable integration of economic, social, cultural and political aspects of the three member states: Tanzania, Kenya, and Uganda. To this end Meredith (2005) argues that the EAC will promote regional projects, facilitating the movement of people and vehicles across borders, harmonizing policies and regulations for trade and investments and promoting regional infrastructure. EAC is implementing its Development Strategy launched in April, 2001 with programmes such as Lake Victoria Basin development, agriculture and food security, energy, tourism, civil aviation safety, postal services, meteorology, and inter-university cooperation. To enhance good governance in the region, two organs of the Community, namely the EAC Court of Justice and the EAC Legislative Assembly were launched in November, 2001. Efforts for concluding the Customs Union Protocol are at an advanced stage (Kimario, 2011).
The EAC will promote regional and continental inter-linkages, the involvement of the private sector, exports to the region and beyond, and facilitate cross border movements.
Tanzania believes that the EAC will assist the region to create a promising future and stability, peace, security, democracy, prosperity and equity. It is, therefore, to Member States, collectively and individually, that place the hope for the effective and timely realization of the goals that with regard to politics, defence and security cooperation, priorities include preventing, managing and resolving conflicts so as to strengthen and sustain national and regional stability, peace and security. This is in concurrence with Article 5(3) (f) on the objectives of the EAC, which reads:
“For purposes set out in paragraph 1 of this Article and as subsequently provided in particular provisions of this Treaty, the Community shall ensure: and sub paragraph (f) continues “the promotion of peace, security, and stability within, and good neighborliness’ among, the Partner States”.
8.2 Tanzania Unique status in the EAC
Kamala (2012), identified factors which qualify Tanzania as the gateway in the East African Community, which includes macroeconomic stability, strategic geographical location, the heart of East African Community transport network, hub of EAC Master Power Plan, nucleus of EAC single Customs Union Territory, focal point of the planed COMESA -EAC – SADC Free Trade Area, regional hub of EAC intra-regional trade, regional hub of investments opportunities, EAC food basket and EAC regional tourism hub. Salim,A and Eyakuze, A. (2012) narrowed the scope in four distinct areas that Tanzania stands as the strategic member in the development and prosperity of the East African Community, These include: Political capital, Demography ,Geography and Resources. All of these areas can and in many ways should be the bedrock on which Tanzania can anchor its self-assured engagement with regional integration.
Political Capital: Despite having been ruled by the same political apparatus since its independence in 1961 the country has enjoyed peace, harmony, democracy and governance to a great extent than any other country in East Africa. Good politics and good governance has made Tanzania an icon for peace and tranquility in Africa. Tanzania has been the designated honest broker in a crisis prone region. Historically, Tanzania has mediated many regional conflicts and has been viewed as a neutral stakeholder whose orientation is peace building (Baregu, 2004). In the late 1990s Mwalimu Nyerere served as a mediator trying to bring the different factions in Burundi towards a peace agreement. In 2006, former Tanzanian President Benjamin Mkapa was sent to mediate Zimbabwe’s political crisis in attempts to resolve the diplomatic stand-off between Britain and Harare. Most recently, Tanzania was heavily involved in solving the post-election crisis that gripped Kenya for months during the 2007 general election. With its historical reputation of being a leader and consensus builder, Tanzania has enough political capital to mediate many of the challenges East Africa faces (Salim, A and Eyakuze, A.2012).
Demography: Tanzania is by far the largest and most populous member of the East African Community. As of 2012, there were an estimated 45 million Tanzanians accounting for 32% of the 139 million East Africans. This share is projected to increase to 34% of the expected 237 million East Africans by 2030 translating to an 82 million Tanzanians as according to Tanzania National Bureau of Statistics (Khadiagala, 2009). Therefore, Tanzanian population gives recommendable domestic market in the EAC goods and services, which other countries can not dare to miss.
Geography: Geographically, Tanzania accounts for 52% of East Africa’s Total combined area of 2.01 million sq km and even though it has the largest population in the region there is significant land available. This is demonstrated by its small population density, which is the lowest in the region at 47 people per square kilometer. In comparison, Rwanda and Burundi have the highest with 403 and 301 people per square kilometer respectively. By 2030, Tanzania will be the only country in the region with less than 100 people per square kilometer. As a result Tanzania has a commanding advantage when it comes to land availability and usage (Tanzania government portal, 2014)
Tanzania is the only member of East African Community which shares the border with all EAC partner states. Currently, EAC is constructing “One-Border-Posts” with the purpose of facilitating EAC intra regional trade. The Border Posts under construction are: Rusumo/Rusumo(Tanzania and Rwanda); Namanga/Namanga (Tanzania and Kenya); Sirari/Isebania (Tanzania and Kenya); Holili/Taveta (Tanzania and Kenya) Horohoro/Lungalunga (Tanzania and Kenya); Mutukula/Mutukula (Tanzania and Uganda); and Kabanga/Kobero (Tanzania and Burundi). Therefore, the geographical Location of Tanzania makes Tanzania A hub of the East Africa Integration of which can never be excluded (Sezibera, 2016).
Infrastructure: Given Tanzania strategic geographical location, Tanzania is the heart of EAC transport network. EAC partner states agreed on five transport corridors which constitute EAC Road Network. Four out of the five transport corridors starts from Tanzania to EAC countries. Five East African Community major transport corridors are: Mombasa – Malaba- Kigali – Bujumbura, Dar es Salaam- Rusumo, with branches to Kigali, Bujumbura, Masaka and Kampala, Biharamuro- Sirari-Lodwar – Lokichogio, Nyakanazi- Kasulu- Tunduma with a branch to Bujumbura and Tunduma – Dodoma- Namanga-Moyale. Thus, 80% of East Africa Road network transit corridors start from Tanzania to Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi.
Tanzania also boasts the largest coastline in the region and has three ports Dar es Salaam, Mtwara and Tanga and one is in plan to be constructed in Bagamoyo. Countries like Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi are reliant on Tanzania for direct access to the Indian Ocean. The opportunities in this are endless and Tanzania should be used as a gateway to middle Africa.
Resources: Tanzania also has a wealth of natural resources that it can use to boost its economic development and invest in regional development. Its reach natural resources including iron ores soon will be in effective use and hence giving rise to Tanzania as a source of Iron and iron materials in the region. It also has more arable land than any other country in the community. Tanzania arable land accounts to 44 million hectors, which potentially not only make it the EAC’s central breadbasket, but Africa’s in general. Southern Tanzania is rich with natural re-sources and has the capability of feeding those in need in southern Kenya and Ethiopia. From the natural Resources endowment of tourism attractions Tanzania is the EAC Regional tourism hub. Tanzania has over 46,000 square kilometers of land reserved for National Parks. There is no any other East African country with such a huge piece of land dedicated to National Parks. Tanzania, has many more tourism attractions such as Mount Kilimanjaro, Ngorongoro Crater, Zanzibar, Serengeti National Park, Katavi National Park and Ruaha National Park to mention a few. A number of investments opportunities are available in tourism sector (Uwe, 1999).
Energy Hub: Tanzania has become an energy potential than the other four countries combined and will become soon the region’s energy powerhouse, after the discovery of large amount of gases and the amount of coal deposit. Energy is potential for industrialization and manufacturing, therefore after the discovery of this potential supply of energy Tanzania opens for vast investment and industrialization. Tanzania is also the Hub of East African Community Master Power Plan. In response to the recurring shortage of electrical energy, in EAC partner states, EAC established EAC Master Power Plan. Most of the projects identified in EAC Master Power Plan are based in Tanzania. The identified project are: Singida-Arusha-Nairobi 400kV Interconnector; Masaka-Mwanza 220kV Interconnector; Rusumo-Nyakanazi 220kV Interconnector; Stieglers Gorge Hydro-Power Project 2100MW; Kiwira Coal 200MW; and Rusumo Hydro Power Plant 90MW (Kamala,2012).
8.3 Achievements of the East African Community
The cross border movement of persons and goods has been eased through a number of measures, example, the introduction of the East African passport, special immigration desks for East African citizens at international airports, re-introduction of interstate passes, and withdrawal of visa charges for students and harmonization of vehicle transit procedures. The free convertibility of the currencies of Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda already introduced in 1977 (Durgesh, 2010). There has also been progress in a number of measures to improve East African infrastructure, for example in road improvement, telecommunication, civil aviation, postal services, energy and related areas and meteorology.
The customs union launched in 2005 eliminates all internal tariffs and other similar charges on trade between the partner states. It was agreed that the customs Union would be gradually implemented over a period of five years. Partner states immediately agreed that goods to and from Uganda and Tanzania shall be duty free. From the start, imports of goods from Uganda and Tanzania into Kenya were free of duty, while goods from Kenya into Uganda and Tanzania were subject to two categories of import duty. C category A goods were duty free, and Category B goods from Kenya into Uganda and Tanzania have the present tariffs phased out over a five-year period. (Ojo et al. 1985)
The customs Union Protocol also established three-brand common external tariffs (CET) with a minimum rate of 0%, a middle rate of 10% and a maximum rate of 25%. The highest CET rate of 25% is to be reviewed by the partner states after a period of five years and possibly be reduced to 20%. The partner states also agreed that all non-tariff barriers should be removed and that no new non-tariff barriers should be imposed (Durgesh, 2010).
In conclusion, it can be stated that aspirations and prospects for an East African Federation are neither new nor unrealistic. However, unity, peace, true democracy and equality within and amongst member states, are a pre-requisite for a viable federation. These variables provide a vitally important environment for an honest and better, and a meaningful referendum on a federation. Members of the EAC need to work first on developing their environment including governance systems and on these elements Tanzania is outstanding in the region. Despite the weakness that Tanzania is experiencing, the country has enjoyed peace, harmony, democracy and governance to a great extent. It stands as a strategic player with unique status in the EAC because of the Political capital, Demography, Geography and Resources variables. All of these areas can and in many ways should be the bedrock on which Tanzania can anchor its self-assured engagement and unquestionable status in the East Africa Community. Thus the argument asserted by the paper “Tanzania Unique Status in the Opulence of the East African Community” is valid and relevant.
This paper is concluding by making Tanzania to stand out of other EAC which are marred with more weaknesses compared to Tanzania. To highlight few issues like the post-election violence in Kenya in 2008 that killed more than 1,000 people was a painful reminder of the severe deficiencies in the political system and also a bold demonstration of the quest for free and fair elections. To its credit, Kenya has been able to pass a new constitution which puts more effective checks and balances into place for the governance of the country. If the spirit and the letter of the new constitution are fully implemented, one can argue that Kenya is in a positive trajectory in its governance. But Kenya needs to gain experience with its new constitution before it propels itself into a federation.
In Rwanda almost all economic indicators suggest that it is doing quite well. President Kagame deserves credit. However, he seems to be following in President Museveni’s footsteps in thinking that he is indispensable. Critical elements of governance are missing in the country including participation of citizen in issues that affect their lives, democracy, and freedom of speech and the rule of law. Many analysts consider Burundi as a failed state. What is perplexing about African politics is that in the last 20 years it has been the autocratic leaders who have been major lobbyists for the political unification of Africa. In the lead was President Gaddafi of Libya. In fact, the precursor to the establishment of the AU was a special OAU summit of African heads of state initiated and hosted by Gaddafi in Sirte, Libya, in 1999, at which point it was declared (in the Sirte Declaration) that steps towards integration must be accelerated. The 2015 elections brought a lot miseries and traumas to Burundians and thus absence of true peace and democracy is a common practice in the country.
Indeed, in often times, dictators and autocratic leaders seek to divert attention from discontent at home by engaging in grandiose international initiatives. There might be some elements of that phenomenon going on in East Africa. Nonetheless, an East African Federation cannot be an “arranged marriage” brought about by overzealous politicians who think they are indispensable or entitled to power because of what they believe they have accomplished. Such a union will, sooner or later, break. What is needed at this point is for the East African countries to continue to solidify their economic integration, implement policies that increase the standard of living for all people, improve domestic governance with checks and balances, and develop genuine democracies at home. This calls for an exemplary country in the respective region of which Tanzania could take that leading role as it has demonstrated to intervene the conflict in Kenya, Burundi and Rwanda during the 2007 election, during the 2015 election and in the DRC visas Rwanda conflict.
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