Land Use Conflicts and opportunities in a Livestock Market: Case study of Garissa Market
Rashid, Hassan H
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Livestock is a crucial source of financial capital for the rural poor. The arid and semi arid lands are home to nearly 70% of the national herd with an estimated value of Kenya shillings 70 billion. For many, it is the only form of savings available. Therefore, its efficient production and marketing is essential for sustaining pastoral livelihoods. The existing Garissa livestock market in Central Division of Garissa District covers a total area of approximately 10 acres. It provides a range of employment and income-earning opportunities. Despite its importance, its spatial size is small compared to the large number of livestock that are traded through it thus leading to a spill over effect to the neighbouroods and causing land use conficts. This study determined the major land use conflicts of the existing Garissa livestock market, estimated the population of livestock traded at the market by type and determined the appropriate market size, design and location to optimize benefits and minimize negative impacts. It also determined the social, economic and environmental impacts to its neighbourhoods and Garissa town as a whole and has proposed intervention measures to ensure efficient marketing of livestock and reduction of land use conflicts. The first phase of the study involved literature review where information on livestock market and livestock in general was reviewed. The second phase involved collection of secondary data on animal diseases, economic, social and environmental impacts of the market and land uses. The third phase involved collection of primary data where data was collected as it existed with the source. After data collection, it was edited and analysed. Finally, a final report in the form of maps, figures, photographs, tables and charts was produced. The findings show that there is a permanent road that passes through the livestock market that links the neighbourhoods to Garissa town. This road is mainly used by pedestrians and vehicular traffic and is the main cause of accidents within the livestock market. The main livestock traded in Garissa livestock market are cattle, goats, sheep, camels and donkeys. They have different selling prices. The size of the market is inadequate and is not well designed and thus lacks most of the facilities that are required by a livestock market. The market is the major source of employment and income. It employs thousands of people ranging from livestock herders to traders. Some government departments from Garissa County collect revenue from the market. The main social impact is that it has improved on the diversity of the people. Intermarriages between different communities and gaining knowledge from one another are also important social impacts of the market. Negative social impacts include, cultural degradation and insecurity. Some of the negative environmental impacts include, air and noise pollution and spread of zoonotic diseases. The main recommendations of the study include; Improvement on market facilities, closure of the market road, provision of alternative parking areas outside the market, establishment of livestock market management board, fencing and relocation of the existing market. Further research can be carried out on modern ranching practices that can enhance livestock production in Garissa county. Further research can also be carried out on the improvement of the road infrastructure in Garissa County.