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|Title: ||Role of indigenous knowledge on water conservation in Nyanza Province South-Western Kenya: a case study of Nyando District|
|Authors: ||Bahame, David Livingstone B.|
|Keywords: ||Indigenous knowledge|
|Issue Date: ||Aug-2009 |
|Abstract: ||The study was carried out in Nyando District in Nyanza province south-western Kenya from April to June 2007. The overall objective was to study the role and document indigenous knowledge practices, benefits, threats, institutions decision making and socio-economic factors which enhance water conservation initiatives among livestock and non-livestock agriculture production systems. Indigenous water conservation knowledge; refers to the large body of traditional knowledge, innovations and competencies that have been developed, practiced and time-tested in the informal education system. The study observed that the insignificant attempts have been done to document indigenous knowledge in water conservation analytically. This is evidenced by earlier studies that ignored significant indigenous water conservation knowledge practitioners in the study area. The study anchored on three major theoretical approaches: - indigenous technologies, neo-liberal and capital-led intensification respectively. Using various ethnographic study methods, this study constructs theory of water conservation amongst a community of subsistence farmers and finds the cause-effect relationship embedded in role of indigenous knowledge.
The research methods were complemented by documentation tools;- questionnaires, narration recording, physical field observations, photography and transect walk. A total number of 196 informants were interviewed out of 200 which were targeted, 85 in FGD of about 6-10 participants, 96 answered structured questionnaires and 15 for in-depth interviews respectively. The results show a substantial number of thirty four (34) traditional water and soil conserving technologies which have been developed, adopted, adapted and widely practiced. The major technologies were presented as; structural, agronomic, managemental, vegetative, and based on percentage responses in ranges of most widely, moderately, and rarely respectively. The highly adopted practices were shallow wells (89%) and cut-off drainage (87%), stone ties (69%), vegetative (69%), sisal strip (63%) and grass strips (54%) and managemental (40%). ANOVA test performed revealed significance in water conservation technologies across all categories; (p≤0.05), (p≤0.04), (p<0.02), (p<0.01), (p<0.00) and (p<0.02) respectively. Also indigenous weather forecasts are widely heard in the study area (agro-pastoralists) more than 98% reported having heard forecasts prior on set of rains. 84% expressed self-assurance in traditional indigenous weather forecasts of rainfall volume expected. Government policies that neglect and misunderstand indigenous land use systems has led to the study area’s acute land scarcity and is a major source of both water pollution and weakened community structures.
The study concluded that indigenous knowledge and traditional institutions have active roles in conserving water. The role of indigenous knowledge in reclaiming farmers’ capacity to achieve sufficient fresh water through sustainable methods is critical. It recommends a series of interventions that aim at revitalizing the use of indigenous knowledge technology. Such as to educate, raising public awareness through mosques, catholic and Anglican churches, propagation and protection of the valuable drought tolerant sacred trees or plants, Cheer up CSO’s, FBO’s, CBO’s and media houses launch water conservation campaigns. Establish IK resource centres, libraries, databank achieves to support this knowledge base and networking information dissemination. Those recommended various strategies must be combined including the use of indigenous knowledge and traditional institutions on water conservation. Studying indigenous knowledge will guide on how they are and how they can be combined with other strategies like those which are scientific based on water conservation. Cultural values and Socio-economic factors must also be taken into account on water conservation.|
|Description: ||A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of the Master of Science in Livestock Development Planning and Management Degree of Makerere University.|
|Appears in Collections:||Theses & Dissertations (Science)|
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