IGR and Interregional Conflict Management in the Ethiopian Federation: The case of Oromia and SNNP Regional Governments

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Addis Ababa University


This Thesis focuses on horizontal IGR between Oromia and SNNPR with a particular reference to the role of IGR in managing conflicts between West Arsi Zone (Oromia) and Sidama Zone (SNNPRS) based on the empirical evidences from the case Woredas on both Sidama of SNNPRS and West Arsi Zone of Oromia. It specifically examines the effectiveness of the institutions and mechanisms of IGRs for managing conflicts between these two administrations; and thereby evaluate whether the extant IGRs mitigate the conflicts. In order to achieve these objectives, the study employed in-depth interview, key informant interview, Focus Group Discussion and document review for obtaining primary data sources; and it has also utilized different secondary sources including books, Articles journal, published and unpublished sources. The study found out that, despite the previous studies view that the competition over natural resources as a principal cause of conflict between Sidama and West Arsi, the conflict was initially started for social recognition (killing as a signal for braveness and social prestige). At present, there are several underlining causes of the conflict ranging from historical, cultural, economic, and political to identity issues prior to the adoption of the federalism and after the formation of the federation. To this end, both traditional conflict resolution (TCR) and IGRs have been utilized to manage the conflict between Sidama of SNNPR and West Arsi of Oromia. Nonetheless, the IGR solution, which was predominantly informal in its form, to manage this conflict has been ineffective than the TCR. But the TCR alone, given the context of federal arrangement in the study area, couldn’t effectively resolve the conflict and the dynamics of issues at the interface between Sidama and West Arsi. It is, therefore, a contention of this thesis that a good combination of both the TCR and more formalized horizontal IGR could efficiently resolve the conflict between the Sidama of SNNPR and West Arsi of Oromia. Key Words: IGR, HIGR, Conflict Management, Interregional relations, Traditional Conflict Resolution



IGR, HIGR, Conflict Management, Interregional relations, Traditional Conflict, Resolution