Ungdomsbander, regeringen og spændingsfeltet mellem disse samfundsaktører i Kenya: En undersøgelse af regeringstiltag over for ungdomsbander i Kenya med fokus på community policing

Camilla Blanche Wade & Emilie Fity

Studenteropgave: Speciale


Abstract: For a long time youth in Africa has been claimed to cause internal threats to security and development and has been the object of attention when it comes to crime and deviant behaviour. Thus the focus of governments, including the Kenyan government, when it comes to solving the rising problem of crime, has been on the youth gangs in the cities. The focus of our thesis is therefore the strategies and actions taken towards youth gangs by the government of Kenya with the following thesis statement “How does the Kenyan government seek to solve the problem with youth gangs and what are the intentions and motives behind their initiatives? Which consequences do the strategies have for the youth in Kenya?” In order to gain knowledge about the strategies and the explanations and intentions behind the strategies, we investigate how crime and youth are positioned and constructed nationally, and how this construction of youth in Kenya has been affected by international youth discourses. We analyse different strategies from a political, historical and social perspective and how specific circumstances in Kenya have led to structures of power and dominance between the government, the youth gangs, and the Kenyan youth in general. We have chosen to mainly focus on community policing and death squads, as they symbolise two very different approaches to youth gangs and the role of the state. We look at the theoretical intentions with these two approaches and critically analyse how they are being applied in the Kenyan context in order to understand if the approaches are realistic in the political and social context of Kenya and to understand how the government is approaching the youth gangs rhetorically and practically. In order to understand how the Government perceives its own role towards its citizens we analyse interdisciplinary theories about the role of the state. We do this in order to reveal how the Kenyan government approaches its citizens and thus the youth gangs and how this corresponds to the strategies it officially follows. Our analyses reveal that community policing shows signs of a skin-deep democratic approach in which underlying structures and values within the government and the police are connected with an undemocratic and authoritarian system which has its roots in the Kenyan colonisation – we furthermore see how death squads is rooted in such a political system. The Government creates methods and discourses in order to justify using death squads in order to control the youth gangs. In conclusion the thesis elucidates that the government uses a liberal approach towards youth gangs rhetorically, when in fact the government points to the youth in regards to crime problems in Kenya and thereby creates the right to use a conservative and authoritative approach, practised through the death squads. This leads to an increased marginalisation of the youth in Kenyan society and thus does not truly reflect or solve the problem with youth gangs in the long term.

UddannelserInternationale Udviklingsstudier, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Kandidat
Udgivelsesdato5 aug. 2010
VejledereJacob Rasmussen


  • National Youth Service
  • Mungiki
  • National Youth Violence Prevention Week
  • Dødspatruljer
  • regeringsstrategier
  • Ungdomsbander
  • Death squads
  • Kenya
  • ungdomsdiskurs afrika
  • Community Policing
  • regerings tiltag