Friday I went to a panel on Indigenous Perspectives on Conflict Resolution with Tonya Gonnella Frichner of the Onondaga Nation (USA) Lilybeth Sulutan of the Bagobo Tagabawa (Phillipines) and Margaret Lokawua of the Karimjong (Uganda). They each had 15 minutes to talk about the methods of conflict resolution in their region, followed by discussion. Ms. Frichner talked about how hard it was to manage the Mohawk Nation when it crosses the USA/Canada border and the recent set-to with Canada arming their border guards. Ms. Sulutan had a presentation on the history of her people and the levels of censure for wrongdoing and how such things were decided by mediators and tribal councils. Ms. Lokawaua spoke about the Lord's Resistance Army and child soldiers and various problems of resource ownership (the Nile's water rights belonging to Egypt rather than to the upstream nations, indigenous landrights at odds with government eminent domain) and other problems facing them. She believes that religious institutions have a role to play in bringing all the disparate groups together. It was clear that conflict in Uganda was many-faceted and, as with the Onondaga, many players/jurisdictions must be brought together. There were no great revelations, but the depth of the problem was definitely brought to light.
National Interfaith Representative