A critique of Ethiopia’s pastoralist policies

Ethiopia’s current economic plans call for extensive development along rivers in lowland areas typically occupied by pastoralists and agropastoralists. These plans include development of large dams for hydroelectric power and irrigating large agricultural estates producing sugar, cotton and rice in state-run and privately owned businesses. Nearly all these projects entail the resettlement of people away from the rivers, and threaten the livelihoods and way of life of the local ethnic groups. The Ethiopian Government maintains that these developments will ultimately benefit both the affected people and the country as a whole. This paper “Ethiopia’s pastoralist policies: development, displacement and resettlement” (pre-publication version) reviews development projects on the Omo and Awash Rivers and in Gambella Region, and refers to works by NGOs and human rights organisations seeking alternative approaches to resettlement. The final published version can be found in Nomadic Peoples 18 (1) 2014.

Posted on 8 June 2014 in Pastoralism & Natural Resources, Pastoralism, Policy & Power, Pastoralist Livelihoods & Nutrition