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Borana and Somali herders in Isiolo told to end conflict

Monday March 13 2017

Isiolo River which has dried up following

Isiolo River which has dried up following prolonged drought. Somali elders in Isiolo have condemned clashes pitting the Borana and Somali in Garba Tulla sub-county over pasture and water. PHOTO | VIVIAN JEBET | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By VIVIAN JEBET
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Somali elders in Isiolo have condemned clashes pitting the Borana and Somali in Garba Tulla sub-county over pasture and water and called for a ceasefire.

At least 10 people have been killed and 13 others injured in the conflicts in less than two months as the herders search for pasture and water due to the ongoing drought.

They condemned the forceful entry of herders from Lagdera in Garissa, to Isiolo South Constituency, saying this is the cause of conflict.

Last Friday, five people were killed and six others injured when bandits believed to be from Lagdera struck Duse Village in Garba Tulla Sub-County.

Bodies of the bandits killed during the ensuing confrontation with police reservists were set ablaze by the angry villagers.

The latest revenge attack has raised tension in the region with security personnel being deployed in conflict-prone areas to prevent further attacks.

EMBRACE DIALOGUE

Isiolo Deputy Governor Mohammed Gullied and Somali Council of Elders vice chairman Abdulkadir Abdullahi urged the two communities to end conflicts over the matter and embrace dialogue.

The elders who denied any political incitement to the attacks called on herders from Garissa County to respect the grazing procedures imposed by elders from Isiolo.

“We urge all herders to desist from encroaching on others’ grazing areas forcibly and instead seek permission through the respective grazing committees to avoid hostility from the hosts,” said Mr Abdullahi.

The ravaging drought has led to insecurity in Isiolo’s reserved grazing areas following an influx of livestock from enamouring Wajir, Marsabit, Garissa and Samburu counties.

County security teams and elders from both counties are expected to hold peace meetings in conflict-prone areas to avert further retaliatory attacks and restore peace along the Isiolo-Garissa border.