This study was commissioned by KRC Uganda working in consortia with the Centre for Economic Social Cultural Rights in Africa (CESCRA) and Women and Rural Development Network (WORUDET) with funding from The European Union. The purpose was to understand the conflict dynamics pertaining the refugee settlements of Palabek, Bidi Bidi and Rhino where they intended to conduct peaceful coexistence activities, with a view to realigning the project to suit the conflict resolution and peace building needs
of the target groups. The objectives of the analysis included assessing the nature of conflicts, mitigation and resolution measures to address the conflicts, the existing conflict management infrastructure, the drivers to the conflict, interventions gaps and practical recommendations to address the conflict contexts in the respective settlements. This was premised on the hope that a successful analysis on the basis of
the above objectives would guide an effective design and implementation of relevant peacebuilding and conflict management interventions.

The analysis findings are discussed in form of the existing forms of conflicts in the settlements, the drivers, key actors, causes, and the indicators, interventions to address the conflicts, existing gaps conclusions, and recommendations respectively. These components of the analysis were meant to give a clear outlook of the current conflict context, in a way that was simplified enough for humanitarian organizations and other stakeholders to easily understand the issues at hand, the key actors, potential challenges, and practical approaches that could be adopted to effectively address the conflict context.

The different forms of conflicts consisted of Resource based conflicts, mainly concerning access to land, building materials and fuel, Identity conflicts that are mainly ethnic driven, Generational conflicts involving the youth and their adult counterparts, Structural conflicts, and Relationship conflicts. The other forms of conflicts which were mainly influenced by the external actors were still imbedded in ethnicity or resource scarcity among others, as their entry points. The drivers that enable these conflicts to thrive include: ethnic diversity, different forms of livelihood, scarcity of services and limited infrastructure, structural deficiencies, differences in legal regimes the nature of socialization and longtime traumatizing experiences.

The categories of key actors in the conflicts cut across the social sphere. In relationships and gender based conflicts, there different actors such as married couples, individual men and women, young men from the different ethnic groups. In resource based conflicts there are Landlords, government, refugee tenants, Herdsmen/cattle keepers and crop farmers, and host community members. In identity conflicts, ethnic groups of the Dinka, Nuer, Acholi and the Murle were reported to clash. In structural conflicts, organizational staff, Police, community members, Local leaders and leaders from the central government were the reported actors. In generational conflicts, Children and parents, youth employees and their adult employers, then Child-rights organizations.

The common causes of the conflict include: Crop encroachment and or destruction by animals violation of water fetching queues, selective treatment during delivery of services, unsolicited access for fetching of firewood, timber, grass from other people’s land, restriction of children from exploration of available opportunities, unclear land boundaries, water shortage and regulated time for opening taps, manipulation and breach of informal land hire agreements, disrespect for cultural differences, restricted
access to information or lack of transparency among the humanitarian organizations, knowledge gaps concerning the Ugandan laws, marginalization of women in decision making, stereotyping, theft and language barrier among others.

The conflict indicators manifested differently at different stages of the conflict. At the latent stage, cold relations among people, formation of particular groups, change of routes or even a service facility such as a health centre. At the escalation stage, quarrels over issues, outbursts in open places, open accusations, reporting issues to police, family and or group meetings, and demonstrations were reported. At the climax or burn out stage, open fights, house burning, suicide, home desertion by the affected parties, waylaying people, and murders among others. At the de-escalation stage, there were calls for dialogue, private conversations, and reappearance in the homesteads, making reference to organizations, seeking help from individuals, extending apologies and seeking forgiveness among others.

Some of the gaps identified include: understanding of the conflict in particular and the conflict context in general and the problem in particular, interventional designs to suit the contextual needs as well as and mode of delivery, resource allocation to the conflict and peacebuilding program activities, identification of the right target groups for activities, human resource capacities to address the various conflict dynamics, coordination and synergy building for delivery and sustainability of the interventions. The other gaps identified were limited capacities both in financial and human resourcing, sustainability strategies and inefficiencies in the kind of tools and approaches employed to address the different conflict contexts/issues.

The analysis concludes that when the resourcing of the peacebuilding interventions is improved in both economic and human resources, a greater reduction of violence and conflict, as well as community transformation, will be realized in both refugee settlements and host communities. It also gives practical recommendations to the government, UNHCR, humanitarian organizations, local leaders and community
members. The recommendations given by this analysis emphasize making it practically possible to effectively address the conflict context using the locally generated and locally mobilized resources and means to a greater extent.

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