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Climate-induced conflicts and livelihoods of farming households in Nigeria: lessons from farmers-herdsmen conflict-ridden communities in Benue State

Authors
  • Soomiyol, Mnguashima Valentina1
  • Fadairo, Olushola2
  • 1 Federal University of Agriculture, Nigeria , (Nigeria)
  • 2 University of Ibadan, Nigeria , (Nigeria)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Agricultura Tropica et Subtropica
Publisher
Sciendo
Publication Date
Jun 01, 2020
Volume
53
Issue
2
Pages
93–103
Identifiers
DOI: 10.2478/ats-2020-0010
Source
De Gruyter
Keywords
License
Green

Abstract

Helping conflict-affected persons requires an understanding of conflict impacts on their livelihoods. Hence, effects of farmers-herdsmen land-use conflict on livelihoods of farming households in Benue State were investigated. Data were collected from 110 farming households in Guma and Logo Local Government Areas (LGA) using interview schedule and focus group discussion. Most (56.4%) respondents were male, aged 51.6 ± 1.6 years, cultivated 9.14 ± 5.75 acres of farm size and had been involved in farming for 27.7 ± 14.16 years. The majority (>90%) experienced high degree of exposure to conflict incidences such as destruction of properties, homelessness and poor access to market. The respondents indicated a high effect of land-use conflict on farming households’ livelihoods (81.8%) and land availability/use (>50%) following conflict regime induced by climate change. All respondents perceived the anti-open grazing prohibition law as a right step to reducing conflict occurrence. There was no significant difference in the effects of farmers-herdsmen land-use conflict on livelihood of farming households in Guma and Logo LGA (t = 0.051). Farming households were highly vulnerable to the effects of farmers-herders conflict and are supportive of the current local authority’s prohibition of open grazing. A concerted effort involving religious institutions, government and non-governmental organisations including persuasion of herders to consider other options of livestock production such as ranching or settlement scheme would add impetus to the on-going efforts to resolve the conflict.

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