n African Journal on Conflict Resolution - Southern Africa in water crisis - a case study of the Pangara River water shortage, 1987-1996 : towards a resource-based conflict management and resolution perpective

Volume 1, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1562-6997


This paper is organised in three parts. The first is an assessment of the nature of the environmental and regional weather patterns leading to predictable water shortages. This is followed by the case study of the Pangara River community. Analysed at the micro- level, as the community tried to grapple with the gradual onset of lack of water, it is hoped that the principles brought out can be anticipated at the regional level. The final part briefly draws on the earlier discussion putting forward sugges- tions and recommendations for the establishment of a regional mechanism for managing the water system..infrastructure. In order to cope with the urban population, states have embarked on development strategies that are dependent on the availability of water without which these cannot be realised. The context in which all the above is taking place is an environment that has no regional water management institution. Individual and uncoordinated action by the region s countries is likely to erupt into war over water. Failure to appreciate this and take anticipatory action, in the absence of a conflict management mechanism, 3 heralds a source of future conflict based on access to an essential resource - water.

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