header photo


The Drum Cafe 2010 Peace Arts Festival/Conference



Talking Drums of Africa in Kenyan stage (19-24th September, 2010)

Convener – Drum Café,

Coordinator:  Edward Kabuye

The Me:  Communicating Dialogue among cultures


(1)               Natariana Kilonzo

(2)              Daniel Lago

Venue:  - Kenya Institute of Education

The conference convened by a welcome address from the coordinator and some poems on Monday morning, 20th September.  After this, His Excellency Michael Rannberger’s speech was read on his behalf by John D. Hayes, who is the US Embassy Public Affairs officer in Nairobi.  As a coincidence of World Peace Day on 20th September, Hayes recollected the events around 2007 Post Election Violence (PEV). “Arts remain the answer to the PEV kind of situation”.  Arts are a solution as they bind cultures and ideologies together. He continued to maintain that, entertainment & Arts are some of the processes of peace building. 


Mr. John D. Hayes

He thanked Kenyans for having conducted a peaceful referendum. He equally appealed to the citizens to never again engage in violence.  He cited artists like Eric Wainaina who play composition on peace, and graft. He said American government assists arts through projects in Laikipia, Lamu, and the latter being under National Museums of Kenya (NMK).he made us aware that, the Embassy listens and enters into partnerships with deserving and organized groups.

Finally, the communication diplomat thanked DRUM CAFÉ, his comment and told them to be in the frontline in addressing poverty, corruption.


Another key speaker was Mr Jared Musima, who manages YMCA in Nairobi.He deliberated on efforts by their organization in restoring order during the PEV situation. According to him, YMCA addresses PEACE holistically through religious values, sports and recreation programmes. In their themes that he stressed, YMCA, through projects in Mombasa, Nakuru, Busia , Central Province  etc, they make sure Youth engage the leaders  through dialogue and critical debates.

Another communication specialist ,Ms RoseMary Nyaole-Kowuor- Communication Lecturer at Daystar University  lamented on television , which makes children ape suspect values and therefore called for ethics and media policy right from the family level to government rules.

Ms Kowuor discussion was focused on depiction of conflict resolution by use of two local films, Wale Watu and peace for peace.

Tim Gitau who is a media professional and the National Coordinator of Children’s Parliament,

Talked at length about conflicts globally, citing cases of genocide for instance. He gave a motivational talked and stressed on how people needed to conquer themselves first. He encouraged people to regard children highly from early stages because it contributes a lot to the person one will be in the future. He talked about the resource of the power of the mind and brain and stressed on the importance of cultivating the culture of reading. He also talked about the great resource in a country apart from the mineral resource which is the talents and gifts every individual uniquely possesses. He also touched on the current Kenyan constitution.

Gor Odhiambo an author in his own making began by introducing his not yet but interesting book entitled, Union of African States-Nkrumah Factor, Obama Angle and the Gaddafi roadmap. He observed that, the focal point in the discussion was all about leadership and education and not peace. He said that violence should be looked at in abrader spectrum. He observed that peace is not the absence of war. He said that western concept of education is a successful failure in Africa.

Gor talked about how Kenya has been left behind in terms of development. In his view the problem of Africa is the foundation and generational leadership. He maintained that Africa isn’t poor but poorly managed hence requires reinvention and not western democracy. He stressed on the importance of parents instilling the value of knowing their mother tongue.

Edward Kabuye as the host urged Kenyans and East Africa to build strong arts foundation, built on proper solidarity of purpose. He told us about the Talking Drums of Africa and how they came into being, that initially the concept behind it was to drum out all kinds of evils affecting our communities. He also talked about his experiences while growing up in a war tone country. He also stressed on the need for people to cease depending on donors. He concluded by saying that the drum is the only instrument that the African family can identify with. Edward observed the drum as a driving force thorough its rhythm.

Dr. Tom Olali, a lecturer of linguistics at the University of Nairobi through his topic, Non-observance of Grecian Cooperation Principle: A Critical Examination into Political Discourse in Kenya, he stressed what idiomatic expressions connote in various cultures and communities. He also touched on the aspects of hate speech and asserted that most political speeches have played a key role in perpetuating violence in the society. He educated the audience on the principles of Grecian cooperation and its four parameters called the maxims of a speech. This include; Quality (contents, prints, arguments), Quantity (beyond time, with contest, observance of time), Manner of Articulation (tone, sounds, connotation), Relevance (issues not at all related to the programme).

A high court advocate Mr Charles Alenga Khamala through his topic of discussion, International Legal Controls of Audio-visual Media in Kenya, expressed that culture could also be used as an aspect of economic freedom, using Hollywood as an example. He cited how context of message determines ones leadership potential, particularly if properly audited in flowing historical profiles. His message left a pointer to the audience to keep following what UNESCO has in store for all, but people hardly follow these yet these could be resources to exploit   in poverty eradication opportunities.

Dr. Mjomba Majalia with his topic- using Local Cultural Performers as a tool for Empowering Peaceful Co-existence and Intergation Among Kenyan Youth, he educated the audience on how Ngoma(drum), can be used to create peace. He rolled a clip showing his project in Taita Taveta district where this concept was being applied and the beneficiaries are young girls from that are. Dr Mjomba is a lecturer at Daystar University.

Last but not least was Mr. Boaz Adhengo, the country representative for the African American Environment Association, shed light on conflict resolution, management and peace building. Through his topic, innovating conflicts management strategies, he educated on common strategies for conflict management. There include; force, negotiation, accommodation to mention but a few. He also brought to our attention the relationship amongst team, integration, innovation, relationship conflict and task conflict.


The conference ended with a number of resolutions including:

i)        Call for home grown solutions, TJRC was given as an example- this emphasizes the concept of forgive and forget.

ii)      Local content to be aired and be supported through funding.

iii)    Drum Café to go to the grassroots like to the counties since it can be a good forum for perpetuating peace.

iv)    Discourage idling among the youth by encouraging them to volunteer and offer community service.

v)      Government needs to start taking culture and art seriously and look at it as a plat form through which peace can be created and perpetuated.

vi)    Publishing the events of the conference and forums whenever they happen..



KENYAN FILM EDUTAINMENT : Depiction of Conflict Resolution 
in Wale Watu and Pieces for Peace

Prepared for The Drum Café 2010 Conference, Nairobi


      This paper draws attention to conflict resolution interventions embedded in two Kenyan films:


Ø      Mary Migui/Cajetan Boy’s

   Wale Watu

Robby Bresson/Mburu Kimani’s Peaces

      One big influence in the lives of youth is media and entertainment

      Low budget filmmaking has resulted in sweeping changes in the Kenyan media scene

      Young people are typically up-to-the-minute on these developments

Youth & Media

      The impact of media content on African culture poses major threat to Kenyan youth.

      Young people face severe threats to negative influence and general well-being.

      What has the local film industry done to enable Kenyan youth make responsible life choices?

Young people have the tendency to emulate drama cast members they consider as role models.

      A methodology that informs and motivates mainly by stimulating interpersonal communication among peers is needed for any massive behaviour change to be achieved (Poindexter, 2004). 


Study Goal

      Explore edutainment strategy with the aim of ascertaining the Dynamics that have influenced the development of the edutainment elements in Kenyan film.

      It has established that Kenyan Film can be a viable advocacy tool for sustainable peaceful coexistence.


Study Objectives

      To identify dominant social issues addressed by Kenyan filmmakers through film.

      To establish different ways film characters are shown to cope with social challenges and ascertain the most preferred by viewers in terms of role modeling.

What is Edutainment?

      The art of integrating social messages into popular and high-quality communication formats, based on a thorough research process (Japheth, 1999) .

      Commanding the attention of the audience while encouraging their growth and development (de Fossard, 2005)

Edutainment Defined

       A type of communication which delivers pro social messages in a pleasurable manner (Njogu 2005).

       Edutainment is thus any communication initiative that sets out to educate and entertain at the same time.

       Edutainment film can be an innovative intervention for conflict resolution and sustainability peace

Edutainment’s Definitive Goal

      To increase audience’s knowledge about an educational issue, create positive attitudes, change social norms, and change explicit behaviour.

To contribute to the process of directed social change, which can occur at the level of an individual, community or society.

Key Findings

      Edutainment strategy contributes to social change by influencing an individual’s awareness, attitudes, and behaviour toward a socially desirable end.

       It can serve as a social mobilizer, an advocate, or an agenda setter, influencing public and policy initiatives in a socially desirable direction.