Two clans agreed to an unconditional ceasefire and signed a peace agreement last weekend in North East Kenya. Finn Church Aid (FCA), working with key stakeholders, brought together the Councils of Elders from the Auliyahan and Abduak, sub clans of the Ogaden clan, to a peace meeting in Garissa County. The meeting was part of a long and successful peace initiative carried out in Northern Kenya.
Tensions have been rising in the Balambala and Ladgera sub counties in Garissa over the past five months due to persistent raids and attacks over livestock and natural resources which have led to communal conflicts.
This latest series of communal clashes began in April when two community groups clashed at grazing fields in the Ashadin and Wayama Jibril areas of the Garissa County. What followed was a sequence of retaliatory attacks that resulted in several deaths and both sides losing hundreds of animals to raiders.
Through the REGAL-IR programme, FCA has been working with these two communities since 2014 to resolve long standing conflicts. With these latest clashes, more stakeholders were engaged and more women and young people were included.
During this process the two “warring” sub clans declared their readiness and willingness to discuss the root causes of the dispute with boundary issues and scarce natural resources key among them. Reaching the ceasefire also required the religious leaders through the SUPKEM Garissa Branch to lead communities in settling the contentious issue of cattle rustling.
At the end of the day, our hope is that both clans remain committed to the agreement which included a clause urging the government to enforce the law accordingly and to apprehend any criminals caught engaging in clashes.
Finn Church Aid (FCA) is implementing the peace component of a larger programme “Resilience and Economic Growth in the Arid Lands – Improving Resilience” (REGAL-IR) by the consortium led by Adeso, African Development Solutions, and funded by USAID.