TOPICS: ADR, Indigenous Conflict Resolution Practices, Syrian Civil War, Conflict Mapping, Agro-Pastoral Conflicts in Cameroon
Christian Chereji and Ciprian Sandu
ARTICLES in Issue 19 – April 2017:
Nigeria: ADR And The Oku Iboku – Ikot Offiong Conflict (1987-2005)
Saviour Peter EMAH
Oku Iboku and Ikot Offiong are border communities between Akwa Ibom State and Cross River State of Nigeria which were entangled in a protracted internecine boundary hostilities during the period under study (1987-2005), typical of the incessant cases of intergroup-boundary conflicts that replete the Nigerian historical landscape. Existing literature on Oku Iboku and Ikot Offiong conflict tend to focus on the causes and consequences of the conflict, with little emphasis on the management techniques employed to quell the duel. The present study is an inquiry into the role of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) as a conflict management technique in the Oku Iboku – Ikot Offiong conflict. Anchored on both primary and secondary sources of information, the study revealed that several conflict resolution mechanisms, ranging from litigations to war, were employed to de-escalate the boundary dispute between Oku Iboku and Ikot Offiong. However, each of these conflict management techniques, with their zero-sum awards, seemed to have escalated the conflict instead of de-escalating it. The de-escalation pathway of the Oku Iboku–Ikot Offiong conflict only materialized with the initiation of Alternative Dispute Resolution strategies. Alternative Dispute Resolution thus appeared effective in the defects of other conflict management techniques. It allowed for an amicable settlement of the Oku Iboku–Ikot Offiong conflict at a minimal cost, faster pace, confidential manner and with a non-zero sum outcome.
Alternative Dispute Resolution, Oku Iboku, Ikot Offiong, Boundary, Conflict, Nigeria.
Cameroon: Endemic Agro-Pastoral Conflicts in Menchum
Venantius Kum NGWOH
This paper aims at dispelling the misconception that the prevalence of agro-pastoral conflicts in Menchum Division of North West Cameroon is because stakeholders have no interest in resolving them. Such disputes have been a common feature in the country where economic resources generate protracted clashes not only between ethnic groups, villages and individuals, but also over the choices of economic activity. From simple crop damage, the opposition between farmers and graziers has been taking many forms, ranging from daily quarrels, frequent exchange of blows, mob demonstrations and litigation, to the use of mystical powers and conventional weapons. Although these struggles are common throughout the division, Esu, Kuk, Mmen and Wumhave singled themselves out as hotbeds. The consequences of these clashes are reflected in almost all spheres of life, including the economy, education, ethnicity, gender, health, human rights, justice, nutrition, peace and politics. In the face of these catastrophic effects, the administration and people of Menchum have been trying in many ways to curb the disputes, albeit without any remarkable success. In 1947, Cattle Control Rules were instituted by Native Authorities who, unfortunately, lacked the legal basis to enforce any decisions and so the 1962 Control of Farming and Grazing Law was brought into force. But it also proved unworkable because stakeholders openly and obstinately refused to obey its provisions. Even the 1978 Presidential Decree creating a statutory organ (the Farmer Grazier Commission) for the settlement of conflicts has remained a toothless bulldog. Other administrative policies, such as demarcation of land, introduction of mixed farming and the barbed wire scheme intended to facilitate peaceful coexistence between the two rival activities, were implemented without any remarkable success. The holding of meetings with stakeholders, the proposals made by the World Food Organization (FAO) in 1962 and the laying down of resolutions by commissions of inquiry like the Nseke Commission (1973) and Koumpa Issa Commission (2003) were other unsuccessful measures aimed at resolving disagreements. Instead of dissipating, conflicts rather escalated, becoming acute and chronic.
Gainako, barbed wire, paddocks, demarcation, kikuyu grass, mixed farming, Esu.
Burundi: Capturing the Complexity of the Conflict in the 1990s
There have been different conflict mapping approaches to understand the complex and chaotic nature of ethnic conflicts. Sandole’s three pillar approach (1998) can be applied to capture the complexity of the Burundi conflict in terms of causes and conditions perspective. In this paper, the Burundi conflict is examined within the time frame of until the 1990s by the conflict analysis of Sandole’s conflict mapping. First, the conflict parties are investigated with the emphasis on conflict issues, objectives, means, orientation and environment. This paper explains how the Burundi conflict between the Hutu and the Tutsi involves factors at each of the four levels of analysis. The suggested conflict mapping addresses the underlying causes and conditions of the conflict at each of these levels and captures the complexity of the conflict in order to affect negative and positive peace. It is important to note that Sandole’s conflict mapping can provide an important tool to shed light on the deep-rooted and protracted nature of the Burundi conflict to be understood by the conflict resolution and peace science theorists and practitioners.
Conflict mapping, Burundi, Sandole’s Three Pillar Approach, the complexity of the conflict, conflict analysis, conflict causes, conflict typology.
Philippines: The Indigenous Conflict Resolution Practices of the Higaunon Tribe
Primitivo Cabanes RAGANDANG III
This research explores the indigenous system of conflict resolution of the Higaunon tribe in Kagahuman, San Luis, Malitbog, Bukidnon, Philippines. The data employed in this study includes the responses of the members of the tribal council and a part of the barangay council of San Luis, Malitbog, Bukidnon. The study uses qualitative approach and the data is interpreted by means of descriptive analysis. The study shows the different cases of social discords by which the tribal council heard. It also presents the resolution processes, the nature of penalty imposed and the interface of the tribal council and the barangay (village) justice system vis-à-vis resolution of conflicts. It also presents the problems encountered by the tribal council in the resolution of conflicts. The study identifies eight cases of social discord, namely: thievery, fighting, murder, misunderstandings, adultery, land conflicts, contempt against rituals and conflicts involving rebels. The resolution processes of the Higaunon tribal council varies from one conflict to another. Upon the filing of a complaint, the tribal council would then schedule the time and place for hearing the case. Sala (penalty) varies according to the nature of the offense. Conflicts involving non-Higaunons are resolved by the sitio (zone) representative.
indigenous conflict resolution; Higaunon tribe; indigenous peoples; tribal conflict, penalty; local government interference.
Syria: Examining the Roots of the Present Civil War
Marc-Olivier CANTIN PAQUET
On the morning of January 4th 2011, as the dawning sun gilded the fruit stalls of the small Tunisian hamlet of Sidi Bouzid, a young street vendor immolated himself in a desperate and resounding response to the exponential boldness of the country’s authorities. Fundamentally emblematic of a wider social resentment against the precariousness of Tunisian daily life, the suicide of Mohamed Bouazizi also proved to be the spark that ignited numerous blazes across North Africa and the Middle East, instantaneously laying the foundations of what is now known as the “Arab Spring”. It is however in Syria that the tremors of this socio-political earthquake were the most acutely felt. Indeed, after more than five years of belligerence, with a death toll now surpassing the 400,000 mark and a migration crisis that has compelled millions to flee, the Syrian War has now reached an apex of inextricability that genuinely dismays the hopes of a foreseeable resolution (Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, 2016). In this context, it seems imperative to examine the roots of this intricate conflict in order to hopefully progress, incrementally, towards an eventual conclusion. Therefore, the task of this essay is to survey to fundamental causes of the Syrian War and to assess their relative ascendancy in its outbreak. To achieve this endeavour, we will engage in a critical utilization of the greed and grievance model sketched by Collier (2000) by drawing chiefly on the horizontal inequalities and social contract theories outlined by Stewart (2010). An initial chapter will therefore be dedicated to the establishment of the contextual and definitional milestones that characterize this conflict and a second chapter will examine its most central causes. Thus, we will advocate for an understanding of the causes of armed conflicts that emphasises on the symbiotic influence of greed and grievance incentives and that stresses the inescapable necessity of employing them in an individualised and context based framework.
Syria, Civil War, Root Causes, Greed and Grievance Model..