Notes to broadcasters
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In 2012, jihadist-backed armed groups took control of parts of northern Mali and instituted sharia law. At the request of the Malian State, the French army intervened to halt the progression of the jihadists towards southern Mali. Since then, insecurity has taken hold in some parts of northern Mali, there are clashes between communities, and a huge number of people are internally displaced.
As a result of this violence, for the past few years, there have been increased conflicts between herders and farmers. These conflicts are often caused or exacerbated by climate change, which has caused significant damage to the environment.
Deforestation, floods, and drought are among the damages caused by climate change, which is now one of the most important factors contributing to conflicts between farmers and herders. For more than 20 years, this has contributed to the destabilization of the Sahel by triggering conflicts that have affected the relationships between farmers and herders.
Clashes between farmers and herders have occurred throughout Mali, especially in the central regions of Mopti and Gao. Several non-governmental organizations and the Malian government have organized awareness-raising activities to calm the situation and find a solution to the problems.
In this radio script, we speak with five people: a farmer, a herder, the Regional Director of Agriculture for the Gao region, a member of civil society, and a project management specialist. They discuss the continuing conflict between farmers and herders.
If you want to create programs about conflict between herders and farmers, talk to members of both groups. You might want to ask them the following questions:
- What are the causes of the conflict between herders and farmers?
- How have the changing circumstances for farmers and herders contributed to the
- What are the consequences of the conflict on herders and farmers?
- What are the possible solutions?
- What concrete actions have been taken to reconcile herders and farmers?
- Is climate change a cause of conflict between farmers and herders? If so, how?
Estimated duration of the radio script with music, intro and extro: 20 minutes
Today, we are going to talk about a complex and important subject, namely the conflicts between herders and farmers in Mali. For a number of years, Mali has experienced conflicts between these two groups.
Conflicts between herders and farmers have resulted in many displacements, deaths, and injuries. The 2012 crisis in northern Mali led to insecurity and the proliferation of armed groups. For over a year and a half, northern Mali was occupied by armed groups and jihadists. This occupation facilitated the outbreak of clashes between herders and farmers. In order to calm the situation and end the clashes, many people and organizations got involved.
To fully understand this issue, we talk first with Adourhamane Hamidou, who gives us a brief overview of the conflict between herders and farmers in Mali. Mr. Hamidou is a farmer in the Cercle d’Ansongo are of the Gao region of Mali. Secondly, we talk to herder Hameye Toure, who shares his experience of the conflict between herders and farmers. Third, we talk to Elisé Goita, environmentalist and Head of the Agriculture Sector of Bougouni. Fourth, we talk with Nouhou Cheybou, President of the Chamber of Agriculture of Gao, who talks about the conflict between herders and farmers. Finally, we talk to Mr. Malamine Traore, a geographer specializing in project management.
Thank you for accepting our invitation.
What are your disagreements with your farming brothers and sisters?
Can climate change be the cause of conflicts between farmers and herders?
Conflicts between farmers and herders have been aggravated in recent years by many factors, including climate change, difficult and insecure access to pastoral resources such as water and pasture, non-implementation of the pastoral charter, poor management of herder-farmer conflicts, and pressures from the increasing population. The pastoral charter is the law that governs pastoralism in Mali. It describes how land should be organized, including crop fields, pastoral tracks, animal resting areas, and access to water points.
In the Mopti region in the centre and the Sikasso region in the south, climate change has caused conflicts between herders and farmers. Currently in the Mopti region, we are confronted with this problem, which drives families to move entire villages.
Climate change causes rivers to recede and conservation areas to decline, including forests. Land also dries out as a result of climate change.
Pastoralism is a necessity and a means of subsistence as well as a source of tension between farmers and herders. These displacements lead to conflicts that cannot be contained.
Thank you very much for your kind attention. Goodbye and I hope to see you soon.
Written by: Aly Ibrahim Maiga
Reviewed by: Elisé GOITA, Head of the Agriculture Sector of Bougouni, Plant Protection Engineer, Mali.
Adourhamane Hamidou, farmer in the circle of Ansongo in the Gao region. Interviewed on November 13, 2021.
Hameye Toure, breeder in the circle of Ansongo interviewed on November 14, 2021.
Nouhou Cheybou, Chairman of the Chamber of Agriculture of Gao. Interviewed on November 14, 2021.
Malamine Traore, geographer and project management specialist, interviewed on January 18, 2022.
Elisé Goita, head of the agriculture sector of Bougouni. Interviewed on January 20, 2022.