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Title: The influence of rituals and taboos on sustainable wetlands management: The case of Matobo District in Matabeleland South Province
Authors: Ndlovu, Christopher
Manjeru, Leonard
Keywords: rituals
sustainable management
Issue Date: May-2016
Publisher: Lupane State University
Abstract: Matobo district is renowned for a lot of rituals and taboos due to its association with the Njelele “sacred” shrine, which for a long time housed u Ngwali, the Ndebele spirit medium. Although the district lies within agro-ecological four which is characterised by erratic rainfall, the presence of well-managed wetlands has saved the local communities from the debilitating effects of droughts. The study sought to find out the role played by the rituals and taboos on wetland management in Matobo District. The study made use of a qualitative research method. Forty participants selected through random and snowball sampling methods were interviewed on the influence of the rituals and taboos on wetlands management. The majority of the participants 80% felt that rituals and taboos that are embedded in the indigenous knowledge systems of the Ndebele society, have contributed much in sustainable management of wetlands. Few of the participants (20)% felt that scientific methods should be used in the sustainable wetlands management. The study recommends that both the indigenous knowledge systems and the scientific methods be integrated for sustainable wetlands management systems that are able to sustain the livelihoods projects of the local communities.
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