The latest analysis, 'The socio-ecological analysis of the farmer-herder crisis in Nigeria' was undertaken at a three-day intensive workshop in Abuja between the 23rd and 25th of July, 2019. The conflict analysis map of the farmer-herder crisis, produced at an earlier workshop by FFARN was the take off point. It was noted at the outset that the ecology is germane in the analysis of the farmer-herder conflict because it is basically a conflict over scarce resources - land and water.
One of the facilitators said: 'When issues occur more than twice between people, you need to look beyond the issues and focus on the relationship'. Remember: Such a relationship includes the environment, context of the conflict. The dynamics of protracted socio-ecological conflict like the farmer-herder one, entails the following:
*Context (Constitution, background to the crisis)
*Needs (Acceptance, assets, security)
*Capacity (Relationship with the international economy, governance & the state, democratic control of the armed forces - DCAF)
*Actors (State, communal, groups)
*Conflict (Nature of the conflict)
We need to frame 'conflict prevention' (CP) better. To be sure, we can actually prevent conflict at every stage - before, during and after. It is best to prevent conflict before it occurs. But if this is not done before the crisis degenerates into violence CP at this stage could de-escalate the conflict. Even after the conflict (the cycle of conflict), all the actors and stakeholders should always say: never agaain. The dividend of CP is development. African countries are losing too much to conflict due to toxic narratives. We need to keep tracking the cost of war in cash and kind for us to value peace more.
In ecological analysis we ask difficult questions like: How can we help both farmers and herders to reach common ground and return to the good old days when they had a symbiotic relationship?
We need to imbibe a CP mentality. Impunity needs to be curbed. Conflict entrepreneurs should be cut to size. We need to put on our preventive lens in all we do. Toxic discourse is inimical to progress. It could lead to the loss of more lives. Advocacy and engagement are the key tools for CP.
What then are the current gaps in CP?
*Limited indigenous and technical capacity.
*Monitoring and evaluation of the cost of conflict
*National Peace architecture still difficult in spite of international treaties
*Undue external influence
*Lack of sufficient investment in conflict prevention and by extension, CP
*Lack of local ownership of peace processes.
*Inability to cope with emerging threats to peace
*Good governance is still a challenge (Participatory, respect for the rule of law, efficiency & effectiveness, accountability, transparency in all transactions, dearth of evidence-based advocacy, etc)
Tied to good governance is the concept of human security (HS). HS entails the following:
*Protection of both genders
*Africa can learn CP from the rest of the wo
*HS should complement state security
*There should be evidence-based advocacy
HS involves many types of security:
UNSCR 66/290 discusses the concept of HS. The context of issues like the farmer-herder crises is bombarded.
This brings us to the concept of development assistance. The Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) in Nigeria destroyed the economy. There are many aspects of the context viz,criminal, perception and cultural. Beyond Nigeria, there are regional dimensions of the farmer-herder conflict.
The ECOWAS Protocol on free movement of persons could be inimical to the concept of secure borders. Secure borders are necessary to prevent the smuggling of rustled cattle across boarders.
The socio-ecological analysis of the farmer-herder crisis is indeed a complex undertaking which involves the economy, politics, environment, etc. New issues keep popping up!
*Climate emergency declarations in 850 jurisdictions & LGAs cover 160m citizens https://climate-emergency-declarations-cover-15-million-citizens/
*Malian Colonel honoured by National Defense University for research on farmer-herder violence https://africacentre.org/spotlight/malian-colonel-honoured-by-national-defense-university-for-research-on-farmer-herder-violence/
*How deadly disease outbreak could worsen as the climate changes newscientist.com/article/2319981-how-deadly-disease-outbreak-could-worsen-as-climate-changes/
*2 feared dead as herdsmen, Sunday Igboho's supporters clash in Oyo state punchng.com
*Dialogue with Pastoralists nextierspd.com
*Is an insurgency slowly gathering momentum in SE Nigeria? humangle.ng
*Nigeria's Buhari overhauls Military as security crisis worsens https://www.ft.com/content/ccaa99cc...
*Sahel's counter-terrorism takes toll on civilians issafrica.org
*Chad:6 things to know about the rebel group, FACT theafricareport.com
*UN suspends operations in Borno, Nigeria after series of attacks allafrica.com
*Why Chad's rebellion and Deby's demise could tip the region into chaos theafricareport.com
*Peace deals with insurgent groups in Nigeria? nextierspd.com
*Nigeria: Bandits' circle nextierspd.com
*Insecurity in Nigeria as @ 17th May 2021: 108 killed, 44 kidnappedin attacks across Nigeria in one week https://www.premiumtimesng.com/.../461862-insecurity.../
*Merchants of terror: he counter-terrorism economy in Africa democracyinafrica.org
*Meet Aisha, her spirit remains unbroken regardless of gruesome past and experience living in Sambisa forest with members of the BH terrorist group youtu.be/bLtz8FsTxMc
*Mas shootings & the failure of empathy goodmenproject.com