Tag Archives: Constitutionalism

State Funerals in Kenya 1963-2020: The Need to Constitutionalize and Africanize State Funerals (Published)

State Funeral refers to the last farewell ceremony that a state accords her Statesmen and women when they die. According to Wikipedia, it is a public ceremony observing strict rules of protocol, held in honour of heads of State or other people of national importance. In Kenya, there have been five deaths that have received this kind of ceremony. The first case was in 1978, when Mzee Jomo Kenyatta (First President of the Republic of Kenya) passed on. Kenyatta was buried in a ceremony that was largely foreign controlled. Traditional African burial practices had very little to do with the entire process. Mzee Kenyatta’s State Funeral was followed by Michael Wamalwa’s death in 2003. Contrary to the expectation of many Kenyans, Wamalwa’s ceremony failed to match that of  Mzee Kenyatta .This trend of conducting State Funerals that lack uniformity continued through Prof. Wangari Maathai, Lucy Kibaki to the last case of  Daniel Moi,2020. State Funerals, being foreign practice has continued to raise more questions than answers among Kenya Africans. The purpose of this paper is to compile one chronological detailed document of State Funerals, bringing out similarities and differences in the way they are conducted. To avoid the differences, the researcher advocates for full Constitutionalization and Africanization of the ceremonies. Constitutionalization is based on Article 119(1) of Laws of Kenya and is a silent call to the legislators to rise up to the occasion. The argument for the application of Africanization of state funerals is premised on Julius Nyerere’s theory of African socialism. The scope of the research is 1963-2020.Although the first case in Kenya occurred in 1978, its preparation started earlier in the 1960s. This study heavily relied on library information with limited oral interviews. Being a descriptive research, information collected was analyzed using thematic analysis method.

Keywords: Africanization, Constitutionalism, Mzee., lie in State, military honour, state funeral

Interrogating an Imposed Constitutionalism in Contemporary African Countries (Published)

The work interrogates an imposed constitutionalism in contemporary African societies. We traced the development of imposed constitutionalism to 1945 when Japan was defeated and American drafted a constitution for Japanese which were described as old fashion and the present imposed constitutionalism been drafted and adopted under the shadow of gun; it happened in Yugoslavia, East Timor, Afghanistan and Iraq. Since majority of African states constitution are imposed, the work set out to examine the impact of imposed constitutionalism on contemporary African states. We discovered that the attempt by one country to impose a constitution on another country is bound to be a difficult task, more so when the reform is coming from outside. Because impose constitutionalism will bring with it a new culture, the cultural conditions that may not fixed in to the country concern. The work then suggests that the advanced countries should give the African opportunity to try their hand on their own constitution, the constitution that will fit in to the culture of the country concern. And the African on the other hand should endeavor to chose the best out of the crops of learned men endowed the continent to produce a constitution that will not only fit in to the culture but  that will take care of the common good of the citizen.

Keywords: African, Common Good, Constitution, Constitutionalism, Contemporary, Continent

Appraising Constitutionalism and Traditional African Governance (Published)

The work focuses on the traditional African governance; it specifically examines those traditional forms of governance that made the society to stand firmly before the advent of Europeans. Many of these traditions were not written down, there were no constitutions; it was just a commitment to make the society move. If constitutionalism is defined as a commitment to limitations on political powers, then it is possible to have such a commitment without a single documentary constitution most especially when commitment is in the blood and culture of the people and at the same time, those people have a keen sense of their own identity.In this work, we will interrogate traditional culture of governance in some communities in Africa. We will examine how effective that governance was and then see the level of commitment to limitation on political power (constitutionalism) and whether some of the relics of governance are still preserved till today. This paper therefore, will employ the conceptual, analytical and reconstructive research methods. While the conceptual method will focus on clarifying key concepts such as constitutionalism, commitment, governance, tradition and culture; the analytical method will examine the period of governance before the advent of Europeans. The reconstructive method will establish the need for this commitment in today Africa.

Keywords: Commitment, Constitutionalism, Culture, Governance, Tradition

Promoting the Right to a Healthy Environment through Constitutionalism in Nigeria (Published)

Environmental degradation can have negative consequences, both expressly and impliedly, for the actual attainment of human rights. For instance, the rights to life and human dignity are only achievable where people can have access to an ecologically balanced environment devoid of degradation. Similarly, the enjoyment of other fundamental rights like food, freedom of worship, good working environment, education and health can also be affected by an unhealthy or unwholesome environment.  In recognition of the vital connection between human rights and the environment, many global instruments and national Constitutions have recognised the right to a healthy environment. The 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is one of such national Constitutions that acknowledge the need to safeguard the environment. The article argues however that the non-justiciable provision of the Nigerian Constitution constitutes a serious threat to citizen’s enjoyment of the right to a clean and healthy environment.   

Keywords: Constitutionalism, Ecologically Balanced Environment, Environmental Right, Human Right, Sustainable Development

Appraising Constitutionalism and Good Governance in Africa (Published)

This work interrogates constitutionalism and good governance in Africa. Constitutionalism is a form of political thought and action that seeks to prevent tyranny and guarantees the liberty and rights of individuals within the state. It is also an essential tool to achieve public accountability, the end of which is good governance. While good governance entails efficient and effective use of power and resources. In this paper, the researcher studies the governance in Africa with the hope of finding out whether the system feet in with what is call good governance as it is been champion all over the world. In the course of this research we discovered that a lot of hindrances are on the African way to the realization of good governance, colonialist and African leaders bear the blame. The work concluded that; since colonialist are at the fore front of propagation for good governance, it is very important for them to correct the wrong of the past and where they are still serving as hindrances; they should endeavour to make an amendment for the good of mankind. And at the same time the Africa leaders should be ready to learn from the past and make necessary amendment so that Africa can move forward.

Keywords: Accountability, Africa, Constitutionalism, Governance, Propagation, Tyranny.