Йэбоах Данил Коджо Леон Брэнйа -
Rethinking Farmer-Herder Conflicts in West Africa: A Case of Asante Akim Agogo, Ghana
Прикладная и междисциплинарная история
Since a lease agreement between the Agogo Traditional Council and a group of Ghanaian Cattle owners in 1997, Agogo became a battlefield to one of the most fierce and recurrent conflicts within Ghana involving farmers and herders over land ownership. Since conflicts between two groups are usually associated with at least one form of antagonistic interest, namely ethnic, this study gives a more complex analysis interrogating the history of farmer-herder conflict within Asante Akim Agogo through an ethnographic and historical lens to help understand their complex and multi-actor underlying causes and resolution mechanisms adopted in the past that has complicated contemporary realities through its institutional structures. Through a qualitative research approach, this thesis reveals that farmer-herder conflicts in Agogo far from being purely ethnic, was founded on the intricacies of its institutional power structure between Traditional and State institutions and also commercial herding, whose agents were not Fulani, creating a chaotic power distributional environment over the ownership and distribution of land¬ — inciting clashes. The thesis also reflects farmer-herder conflict as multilayered in nature as violent clashes between farmers and herders were seen starting from a cold state before turning hot between farmers and herders. However, what complicated cold conflicts transforming it into violent clashes which persist in present-day is the break in the direct chain of connection between the elite and grass-root actors on resolution processes as well as the isolation and non-recognition of the role and influence of Family Heads as key agents in conflict initiation and its subsequent resolution. It concludes that until the messy institutional structure upon which this violent conflict is anchored at Agogo is reorganized and tackled, the farmer-herder conflict which dates to the 1990s could persist far into future.