Together to Strengthen Green Politics in Kenya
Kenya’s institutions and models of political and economic governance have largely remained non-inclusive since independence. The political landscape is highly tribal/ethnicity based.Political leadership and governance are mostly unaccountable, and corruption levels are high. Kenya was ranked 124 out of 180 countries in the Corruption Perceptions Index 2020 released by Transparency International.
Strategic environmental assessments and green politics have not been given their rightful place to inform development and infrastructure in Kenya. Currently, there are few political alternatives with an environmental agenda.
Amplifying Green Influence in Kenya
A green agenda in tune with scientific research is key to progress politics in Kenya. Green Forum and United Green Movement (UGM) are working together to advance the green agenda, to forward the active engagement of national and regional forces in the fight against injustice and environmental degradation, including climate change.
United Green Movement Party has a vision “to establish a united, peaceful & prosperous nation in which all citizens enjoy social, economic and democratic rights, living in dignity and harmony with their environment”
UGM is currently the only party with a comprehensive political program based on green ideology. The party was registered in 2019 and has quickly grown to be a political force in the Kenyan political landscape.
Green Forum’s collaboration with UGM aims at supporting UGMs’ ambitions to:
- become more visible
- strengthen and institutionalise their growing organisation
- build a strong ideology-based party on all levels
During the year of collaboration with Green Forum Sweden, UGM has:
- increased their media reach
- developed a party manifesto for the elections 2022
- produced a party handbook for their candidates
- and trained over 1000 members in green ideology and external communication.
Science Meets Politics
Science Meets Politics Conferences (SMP) is a concept developed by Green Forum intended to strengthen political ecology as a central and trans-party issue, considering the last scientific data on climate change (cf. IPCC reports, last publication of all reports and data in April 2022).
The first conference took place in Nairobi and was crafted to find ways to participate in the global effort aiming at responding to climate change in a constructive manner. All actors (CSOs, researchers, political activists, NGOs) commonly agree that both data, science, technologies, and solutions are already available for transitioning modern societies to sustainable ones. At the same time, they agreed that it is the political will that is lagging and holds a critical responsibility in crafting, voting, implementing, and enforcing the solutions and the legislations required. This deadlock is identified as one of the most important to overcome if humanity wants to address the unavoidable socioeconomic, humanitarian and ecologic catastrophes lying ahead of us.
Since climate change is a problem faced by humanity, without distinctions of political orientations, the idea is to bring all political actors around a consensus on assessment and mitigation measures.
The SMP format is designed to contribute to bridging the gap between knowledge producers, political parties, and the public, working in a multiparty setting with Greens leading the way forward in this trans-party necessity.
SMP, at a first glance, managed to:
- Bring scientists, politicians and the public together to discuss green issues.
- Position green issues on the political agenda as a common core issue for all parties.
- Bring 11,350 online viewers to the event.