Anyone interested in issues related to social and economic policies for Kenya cannot fail to take note of this book issued last year by the Institute of Economic Affairs. It is a voluminous work produced with the help of many of Kenya's top scholars. The brief to the professionals and experts who contributed to the book was: “to outline the prevailing situation and then to map out the realistic and practical options and alternatives for improvement and change.”
The book is divided into five main sections, namely: Overcoming political and structural constraints; Towards a professional government; Creating an environment for economic growth; Human development and Enhancing productivity. Most, if not all of the issues that have become regular topics of discussion in the mass media have been given detailed treatment in this work. Examples are: Constitutional and economic reform: the linkages; The rot within: the culture of corruption; Civil service reform; Taxing the people; Information and communications: the potential for take-off; Education for life; Will there be food in the future: sustainable agriculture; Kenya's arid and semi-arid lands.
Each topic is treated in depth, with statistical references, graphs and tables to back up the data presented. In addition, many boxes highlight portions of the text considered of particular interest. Bibliographical references add value to the work for researchers.
The book is written in a very readable style so that even such difficult topics (for most lay persons) as capital markets are made intelligible. In short, anyone who would wish to broaden his or her knowledge about what is wrong with our country and how things could be made better, can do no better than to make a study of this book.
The publishers have made access to the material¾even for very busy people¾more possible by producing a “Summary” edition of the work (120 pages). There is therefore no excuse for becoming informed and able to contribute intelligently to the debate of how to bring about a better society.
The address of the Institute of Economic Affairs is P. O. Box 53989, Nairobi.
The Online publishing of WAJIBU is by Koinonia Media Centre.