Land use conflict between pastoralists and farmers in Tanzania has existed for many years (Maghimbi et al., 2012). The causes and effects of these conflicts have varied from one place to another. Researchers (HAKIADHI, 2010; PINGOs 2011; Maghimbi et al., 2012; Massay, 2014; TNRF, 2014; and Ngowi, 2015) have identified absence of land use planning, the wave of green grabbing, increased large scale agricultural investments, weak policy and institutional framework, corrupt leaders and skepticism toward pastoralism as viable livelihood option as some of the contributing causes of the longstanding conflict between these two groups of producers. Over the years, the media has often reported killings of people and livestock and the loss of properties due to these conflicts. Efforts have been made by different actors, including civil society organizations, to address this problem through mass education, land use planning, organizing communities and building citizen voices, and through policy reforms. However, these efforts have not yet managed to end this problem.
This brief, tries to document the work that Tanzania Natural Resource Forum (TNRF) has done in addressing farmer-pastoralists conflicts in Pawaga division in Iringa District. The approach that TNRF used was building an understanding of the political economy of the conflicts among the victims which then created debating community of farmers and pastoralists. Finally, the movement that brought together farmers and pastoralists started. This peasant movement has provided an alternative option to deal with the problem. We have shown in this brief some of the early successes of this approach.
The findings of this brief are based on the field works conducted by TNRF between October, 2014 and November, 2015.TNRF’s intervention in Pawaga division started by a baseline study which was conducted in September 2014 and was followed by field works which include stakeholder meetings and trainings from October, 2014. The brief has four parts: the introduction, Pawaga as the epicenter of farmer-pastoralists conflicts, epistemic community of farmers and pastoralists, and the way forward. Throughout this brief, we argue that conflict between farmers and pastoralists are often caused by factors that are beyond their control. We also maintain that there are groups that instigate and benefit from these conflicts and thus want the conflict to continue. Moreover, this brief urges that the understanding of the political economy is very important before addressing such conflicts. We conclude that the state has a key role to play in seeking a sustainable way to end these conflicts. However, we underscore that farmers and pastoralists can reach a lasting solution to their problem by discussing their issues openly and in united groups. The subsequent parts of this brief discuss these in details.