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Article Published In Vol.7 (Sept-Oct-2019)

Herders-Farmers’ Communal Conflict in Nigeria: An Indigenised Language as an Alternative Resolution Mechanism

Pages : 615-623, DOI: https://doi.org/10.14741/ijmcr/v.7.5.3

Author : Olagbaju O. Oladotun and Awosusi Oladotun Emmanuel

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Nigeria is heterogeneous by default with over 250 ethnic groups speaking over 500 different languages across the six key geopolitical zones .In a cultural and linguistic environment with diverse nationalities like Nigeria, conflict is a natural phenomenon. This is because it emanates from the differences in individuals or groups aspirations, values, or interests. These conflicts, no doubt, portend harmful effects on the country’s cultural and social values; ethnic cohesion; social integration, stability and nation-building. Most recent and recurring communal violent conflicts are the socio-political upsurge in the North-Central Nigeria, specifically in Taraba, Adamawa, and Benue States between the Herders and Farmers. The origin of Herders-Farmers’ communal conflict dates back to beginning of agriculture in Africa. Notable among the factors responsible for the recurring conflict between herdsmen and farmers in North-Central Nigeria are socio-cultural and linguistic-related differences. Previous attempts to solve these incessant clashes have largely focused on communication, compensation, creation of cattle colony, proclamation of bans on grazing and so on. These approaches have left out the choice of language of mediation. Hence, this paper attempts to determine the causes of the conflict and proffer a linguistic approach in conflict management through the use of indigenised Hausa language as tool for mediation in herders-farmers’ communal conflict in Nigeria.

Keywords: Herders, Farmers, Conflict Management, Indigenised Language, Resolution

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