The factors influencing sustainabilty of peace in resource-based tribal conflicts in Laikipia North District
Laikipia North district is one of four the Districts in Laikipia County in the Rift Valley region of Kenya. It is a multi-ethnic tribal county which pastoralist communities share with ranchers, farmers, horticulturalists and wildlife conservation areas. This study attempted to examine the factors that influence sustainability of peace among the communities living in Laikipia North district. The objectives included to investigating how land use practices including nomadic pastoralism, ranching, horticulture, crop farming influence tribal conflict, to investigate how traditional structures influence sustainability of peace, to establish the influence of ethnicized politics on sustainability of peace, and to establish the influence of civil society interventions on sustainability of peace in Laikipia North district. In the course of this study, primary and secondary literature of related nature was reviewed including academic researches, journal papers, reports and books including online materials related to the area of study. Descriptive research design was adopted with purposive sampling method applied when analyzing the target population. Structured and unstructured design questionnaires were developed and used for data collection. The sample was purposively drawn from the 210 peace workers who are members of LPCs and DPC of Laikipia North District which each of 14 LPCs producing 3 respondents one of whom had to be a member of the DPC thus making a sample of 42 participants. Questionnaires and reviewed by experts and pretested before implementation to ensure validity. The data gathered was analyzed using the Microsoft Windows Excel 2010. After data analysis the descriptive statistics results were presented using percentage tables. This study has revealed that pastoralism is a factor that contributes to tribal conflicts in Laikipia North as was asserted by 71% the respondents. The findings of this indicate that in overall, ethnicized politics in a multiethnic area like Laikipia North District is viewed as challenge to sustainable peace. The study also established as was affirmed by 74% of the respondents that traditional structures were very effective in peace building and conflict prevention. Supported by 97.5% of the respondents, civil society interventions were found to be highly effective in fostering sustainable peace in Laikipia North District. This study recommends to the county government of Laikipia County to proactively take lead in peace building and explore alternative means of livelihoods to reduce depends on livestock which put pressure on resources. It further recommends that the DPCs and LPCs should be linked up with the traditional structures to create to enhance their effectiveness. The study also recommends strengthening of collaboration between the government and civil society.