Traditional conflict resolution strategies among the Lozi speaking people of Nasitoko village of Mongu district in western province.

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Manaleta, Mufaya
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The University of Zambia
This study investigated dispute resolution among the Lozi people of Nasitoko Village in Mongu in Western Province. The Specific study objectives were: to examine the type of conflicts that arise in Nasitoko village; to find out the rules and practices that govern the African traditional dispute resolution in Nasitoko village; and to analyze the approaches and strategies traditional leaders use to prevent and resolve conflicts and to enhance stability in Nasitoko village. The study employed a descriptive survey design using the qualitative methods of data collection and analysis. The qualitative approach was used because it helped the researcher to explore and describe the experiences of the study participants. The study data was collected through interview guides and observation schedule. The sample size for this study was thirteen (13) participants comprising one (1) chief, four (4) headmen, four (4) Indunas and four (4) old village members randomly sampled. The study data was analyzed thematically. Research findings revealed that the types of conflicts that arose in Nasitoko village were those of a person refusing responsibility of a pregnancy, marital problems, theft, land disputes and defamation of character. With regard to the rules and practices governing conflict resolution, the study established that the traditional court acts on complainants that are officially lodged in by the complainant through the court secretary. The court fines those individuals who fail to appear for hearing. Furthermore, both parties to the dispute are under oath to tell nothing but the truth. On the strategies used in Nasitoko village to resolve conflicts, the research revealed that; negotiation between the two opposing parties, reconciliation and use of adjudication and arbitration were common. Generally, civil cases are the ones that are mostly resolved by traditional leaders. Restorative justice is primary in the use of negotiation, reconciliation, adjudication and arbitration as the strategies used in conflict resolution. The study recommends that; traditional leaders handling traditional disputes should be trained in constitutional matters and tokens of appreciation to be given by government to those saving on the traditional court to reduce corruption. The government should also accord full recognition of traditional courts in conflict resolution so as to decongest the modern local courts.
Dispute resolution (Law)--Zambia. , Arbitration and award--Zambia.