Guns and Governance in the Rift Valley

Guns and Governance in the Rift Valley

Pastoralist Conflict and Small Arms
Kennedy Agade Mkutu
Distribution: Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Costa Rica, Dominica, Dominican Republic, El Salvado
Publication date: 05/20/2008
Format: Paperback 8 b&w photos, 29 figures, 10 maps
ISBN: 978-0-253-22009-7
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Recent estimates indicate that more than 640 million small arms and 16 billion rounds of ammunition circulate the globe yearly. In North East Africa and the Rift Valley, the flow of arms has been particularly heavy and has led to the escalation of banditry, cattle rustling, raiding, and ethnic conflict. The impact small arms have on the area, according to Kennedy Agade Mkutu, is a symptom of the failure of states to govern and of superficial programs that focus simply on disarmament. In this hard-hitting book, Mkutu brings together all the issues affecting the arms trade, from the regulation of international arms sales to regional efforts to improve security, community involvement, and economic development. He cites cultural changes to the legacy of pastoral violence in the region as key ingredients in stemming the disastrous spread of small arms.

Author Bio

Kennedy Agade Mkutu lectures at the Kenya Institute of Administration and has been a consultant on small arms and pastoral conflict for many international agencies.


“A path-breaking examination of a highly important and hitherto largely neglected topic.”
 — Mark Leopold, University of Sussex

“A systematic overview of the effect of small arms on pastoralism and governance in Karamoja and Samburu/Laikipia/Turkana.”
 — Philip Winter, Rift Valley Institute

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Table of Contents

Maps and Photographs
Tables and Figures
Acronyms and Abbreviations
1. Introduction
2. Pastoralism: Conflict, Change, and Governance
3. The Proliferation of Small Arms and Light Weapons
4. The Impact of Small Arms and Light Weapons
5. State Interventions in Pastoral Conflict
6. Conclusions