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University of Cape Town (2018)

An analysis of local perceptions of the role of drought in exacerbating contemporary pastoral conflict in northern Kenya : a case study of Marsabit County

Mohamed, Bishar

Titre : An analysis of local perceptions of the role of drought in exacerbating contemporary pastoral conflict in northern Kenya : a case study of Marsabit County

Auteur : Mohamed, Bishar

Université de soutenance : University of Cape Town.

Grade : Master 2018

Résumé partiel
Pastoralists’ communities in Kenya have been co-existed since their migration and settlement in the region. However, frequent conflicts have been experienced among these communities due to scarcity of natural resources and drought. Pastoralists in Kenya are concern with raising their livestock, moving the herds in search of scarce resources such as water and pasture. The root cause of pastoralist conflict in Kenya is scarcity of natural resources and drought. This has often been suggested to trigger conflict flare-ups and that there was a recent flare up in the year 2016. Many descriptions of the conflict suggest that drought is an underlying driver, however other factors have also been suggested, i.e., politics, availability of arms, cultural values, population, governance, and lack of income (Adano et al., 201. Hence this research project explores the local perceptions of the main drivers of conflict. While studies have been conducted on the effects of droughts on pastoral communities and their coping strategies in the County, little is known of the perceptions of the locals on the role of drought in exacerbating inter-ethnic violence among three main pastoral communities in the region i.e. Borana, Gabra and Rendille. The main objective of this study was to establish the local perceptions of drought in exacerbating contemporary pastoral conflict in Marsabit County. Though there have been several studies on vulnerability to drought conducted in the area, all of them tend to neglect the conflict between the three main clans in Marsabit County. Moreover, the pastoralist communities in the region have experienced conflict flare-ups for many years despite availability of institutions that ought to have solved it. Therefore, the study specifically aims to analyze the different causes of conflict in Northern Kenya with an eye to determine the perceptions of Borana, Burji and Rendille clans and government and non-governmental on role of drought in increasing conflict in the Marsabit County. The study also examines different interventions used by government and non-governmental organizations in dealing with conflict in the area.

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