Lamu, KENYA:The Lamu County security committee has completed a weeklong tour to preach cohesion to various parts of the county that are constantly marred by herder-farmer conflicts due to scarcity of pastures.
According to the County Deputy Commissioner Stephen Sangolo,the exercise was successful and that the committee had been able to talk to the two sides on the importance of peaceful coexistence and tolerance even in situations of scarcity of a resource needed by both.
There have been constant conflicts between herders and farmers in Hongwe, Baharini, Mpeketoni and Witu Lamu with farmers accusing the herders who are mostly from neighboring Tana River and Garissa counties of deliberately feeding their livestock on their farms.
Sangolo warned both parties against taking the law into their own hands whenever conflicts occur and urged them to instead seek assistance from the county commissioner’s office.
He said they were working on allocating adequate pasturelands to both sides in order to bring the squabbles to an end.
“We have successfully managed to bring the cohesion between the two sides I can say.We have told them not to take the law in their hands and instead come to us when there is any issue.we are however working on a long-term plan that will completely clear all this. We feel either side must have their own pasture grounds and we shall see how to go about it.The important thing is peace and cohesion,”said Sangolo.
Lamu Governor Issa Timamy said the county government would also set aside parcels of land for herders and farmers pasturelands in the near future.
“We are working on a motion that will see both sides allocated separate pasture lands so that we don’t have instances where they conflict over the same pastures,”said Timamy.