International Journal of
Biodiversity and Conservation

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Biodivers. Conserv.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-243X
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJBC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 591

Article in Press

Anthropogenic Menace on Sacred Natural Sites: The Case of Me’e Bokko and Darartu shrine in Guji Oromo, Southern Ethiopia

Gemeda Odo

  •  Received: 17 October 2018
  •  Accepted: 15 January 2019
Biocultural diversities and sacred natural site in particular, have been threatened due to pervasive nature of anthropogenic impacts. The menacing factors that affect sacred natural sites are not similar across the globe in degree and level of influences. Hence, this article aims at exploring anthropogenic menace on Me'e Bokko and Dararatu sacred shrines among Guji Oromo, in Adoolaa Reeddee and Annaa Sorraa districts, respectively in Southern Ethiopia. Methodologically, ethnographic design was used and data gathering tools; namely, in-depth interviews, transect walk, and focus group discussions are used to gather data. The findings of the study demonstrated that the expansion and teaching of Abrahamic religions (Christianity and Islam), the unsustainable infrastructural development projects, the modern educational system, the gradual declining of the value of submissiveness to customary laws of the Gada system and encroachment of sacred land are among anthropogenic menaces affecting the existence and sustainability of the sacred shrines in the study area. However, the Guji community mitigate factors affecting sacred shrines through indigenous coping mechanisms such as replacing a destroyed sacred tree by ordaining another tree, overseeing sacred shrines in different occasions, demarcating the sites and enforcing customary punishment to sustain the sacred shrines. It had better to keep the sustainability of sacred shrines, which are embedded in Guji culture, and to mitigate the existing anthropogenic factors affecting them, local communities, scholars, government and non-government organization have to work in collaboration.

Keywords: Anthropogenic menace, sacred natural sites, Me’e Bokko, Daraartu, Guji Oromo