Yalew Teshome, Nigatu Bogale and Belayeneh Nigussie
Ethiopian government uses agricultural investment as one of the most important and effective strategies for economic growth, food security, and poverty reduction in the country. Since the mid-2000s, government has awarded millions of hectares of fertile land to foreign companies. This study explores the impact of large-scale.
Agriculture investment and its consequences to local livelihoods in Gambella Region, Ethiopia. Gambella people survival and their identity are strongly tied to the land and the rivers that run through it. However, currently, foreign and local investors grab the farm area on an industrial scale and that deprives their livelihoods and increases forced displacement and “villagization” as a result that smallholder farmers are displaced, pastoralists lose the grazing land, and local people lose incomes and livelihoods. Lastly, in the region, due to land corruption, lack of good governance and transparency, the natural resources are depleted and societies become food insecure.
The purpose of this study was to identify the livelihood strategies and diversification status in the western tip of Ethiopia, Lare woreda. A mixed research method of sequential transformative strategy was used. Surveys and key informant interviews (KII) were sources of data. A survey of 133 sample households and four KIIs were employed. Diversification status was measured by Simpson diversity index (SDI) using SPSS 20. The result showed that 33.8, 40. 6 and 25.6% of the households were poor, less poor and better-off, respectively. More than half of the households (53.4%) pursued three activities as a means of income and food. Crop and animal production were practiced by almost all of the sample households. The distribution of households with livelihood categories showed on-farm (10. 5%), on-farm and non-farm (15.8%), on-farm and off-farm (12%) and on-farm, non-farm and off-farm (61.7%). The Simpson diversity index revealed that 15.04, 30.07 and 54.89% of the households were less, medium and high diversifiers, respectively. The mean diversification score of the households was 0.5775, and the diversification status was a lot better as compared to other study results within and outside Ethiopia.
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