WELCOME TO GSG NEWS PAGE
Latest News Update From Central Gharri Region June 10, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
According to an eyewitness report from EL Waq, the Gharri Defense Force (GDF) are holding 15 Marehan prisoners of war in Boru Hache that were captured on June 09, 2005. Also, two armored trucks were captured along with its armories. Our reporter said that most of the enemy combatants were killed or wounded and the rest escaped in disarray. The Tyrant Farah Bulle Abdi, Iftiin Mohamud Umar aka iftiin-dheere, and Hire Sh. Hassan Iftiin were amongst the dead.
BORU-HACHE HAS BEEN LIBERATED June 09, 2005 byGur Gharri GSG News ContributorAccording to a report received from Bore 11 Gharri District, Kenya, the tyrant Yusuf Kanttee and his ill trained street thugs were removed from EL Waq town on June 09, 2005 at 8:00 am local time. Also, intercepted fleeing Marehan radio communiqué confirmed that they have bailed out of the city without shoes running for their lives. However, there are no numbers of casualties available at this time.
June 03, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
According to information received from moyale on May 31 2005, five-gabra manatta were raided by borana mobs. It is believed that thousands of cattle were taken and several hundred people were killed including 2 Kenyan police officers. Mr. Mohamed Rago Ursa and Mr. Mohamed Hapicha’s cattle were among the looted herds.
The Gharri Support Group conference was held in Atlanta GA on May 28-29. It was very successful. It was agreed that we continue meeting once a year at different locations or states. Also, a national committee of eleven members was created. This committee is responsible to come up with or to create a common theme that will enable each GSG community in every state represented at the conference. Those committee members are expected to come up with their own community financial planning that will benefit Gharri citizens in all 3 regions.
The self declared SNF (Somali National Front) Marehan street thugs have stolen about 40 Gharri camel and 30 cattle, which belonged to the Borre 11Gharri residents. Animal stealing has risen to the highest level it ever has been. The thieves are not the Somali National Front (SNF), but the Marehan street hasstlers and known thugs headed by Yusuf Kantee. According to our correspondent, the frequency of animal robberies in the past two months has been unprecedented and surpassed all the animals stolen in 2001, 2002and 2003 combined. Yusuf Kantee had tried to use those looted animals as a negotiating tools to legitimize himself as a man to be reckoned with. However, his days are numbered and he will pay dearly for his crime against the EL Waq and Boru-Hache residents.
April 18, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
LATEST NEWS UPDATE FROM GHARRI DISTRICT Gharri soldiers have defended their motherland successfully once again. The enemy militias have been crushed. The latest information received from EL Waq indicates that 20 enemy forces were killed, or captured and many more were wounded. The rest of the so-called “SADE MILITIAS” escaped in disarray. Victory to the Gharri people.
April 18, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
Breaking news from EL Wake April 18, 2005, By Gur Gharri GSG news contributor According to eyewitness reports from EL Waq The Sade militias headed by Col.Yusuf Mohamed Abdiqadir assistant minister of Garsor, Abdiyare Duqoow and Jamal Xasan Sareey raided EL Waq from five corners at 7am local time. The initial report states that nineteen enemy militias were killed and two technical armored vehicles were destroyed. However, fighting is on going at this time and we will inform you as soon as further information is available.
April 08, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
New fire has erupted in Mandera front line: According to information received from Gharri District, on April 07, 2005, the Marehan hoodlums’ ambushed two young Gharri entrepreneurs in Bul-Hawo, Somalia. One man died instantly in the hail of bullets, and the second one in near death fighting for his life, as he is not expected to live. Also, GSG has learned that massive Marehan militias have been seen gathering at Dhamassa preparing to invade EL Waq
April 04, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
On April 2, 2005, the Oromo region administrator ordered the torturing of forty Gharri inmates. According to an eyewitness report, the inmates were severely beaten with the bottom of an AK47 and were locked up in ten by ten room, without windows, or ventilation. Twenty-two of the inmates suffocated and collapsed. However, the Ethiopian arm forces rescued them. The perpetrators were not punished and the reasons why those imamates were tortured are unknown. However, there are speculations that the inmates were tortured in order to break the Gharri people’s spirits and intimidate other non-Gharri citizens so that if they lined with and voted for the Gharri people, they too will be tortured accordingly.
Thus far the Moyale referendum elections were scheduled over a dozen time in which each stated election had failed to complete due to fraud and collaborative effort of Oromo leadership and Ethiopian election boards members to change the election outcome when expected election result will show that Gharri people will be victorious. Again, for the third times in a week, the Ethiopian election board members upon realizing that the Gharri population out numbered the Oromos had changed the Moyale referendum election date. So, it has been rescheduled for Thursday April 07, 2005. Therefore, they have began engaging in an smear campaign against the Gharri people by engaging in an unauthorized and illegal investigation by going house to house, confiscating over two hundred voting cards from Gharri citizens. They accused the Gharri people for being a majority in location 02 and they are determined to cancel the Gharri voting cards in order to help the Oromos win the Moyale referendum.
Also, GSG has learned that the Murale and Gharri conference in Mandera is on its second day, according to conference participants, they are discussing about peaceful coexistence not the return of the Murales to the Gharri land. The Corner tribes, Degody and Marehan elders were excluded from this Gharri and Murale peace conferences alleging that they are perceived to be part of the problem between these two communities.
March 23, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
According to information received from Gharri District, on March 21, 2005 the Kenyan arm forces went to Wargadud and take over the water posts, confiscated the key from the Gharri citizen, and demanded that the Gharri citizens trade in guns with the key to the water wells. However, they let the locals have access to the water, but sill are putting too much pressuring the locals hoping that the wargadud residents will turn in illegal fire arms.
Adan Mohamed Noor and Diqaya Dido have been released on bail. However, 35 Ires Teno residents are still in Wajir jail. Their next hearing has been scheduled for April 10, 2005. Also, Sheikh Hassan Adan Khalif has been re-arrested.
Gharri people have turned in 1 million shillings in blood money in lieu of the 100 camels they were imposed to pay earlier during the peace accord. Also, Murales have been instructed to bring in 24 million shillings or 2,400 camels, but their elders requested to be given four days extension so that they could go to their countrymen for consultation or discussion.
The Moyale referendum process is going smoothly, our reporter said it’s going better than expected
Western and Central Gharri regions news update March 21, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
A Much awaited Moyale referendum process has began today. It was agreed on to start the referendum process through in an unconventional way. The authorities agreed to house count and distribute voting ballots to its inhabitants. So, the local authorities were given nine days to complete the referendum and determine which region would take over the Moyale district administration.
Northeastern Province Kenyan government officials headed by internal security minister Mr. John Michuki and NEP PC Mr. A. Mwassera, have met with the Gharri district officials and local leaders to discuss the EL Golicha Massacre. They were not able to finish their discussion, and the meeting ended without any results. GSG has learned that, over a dozen people were injured and a dozen more were jailed. Our reporter stated that the trouble started when a booing mob interrupted Mr. Shaban’s speech, and the Murale thugs started throwing objects into crowd. Subsequently, the mutiny of women and children took the street and went berserk thereafter.
According to meeting participants in Madera town, the NEP PC was confronted with an erroneous report that he made regarding EL Golicha Massacre in regard to who the perpetrators were. Therefore, he acknowledged that he made a bad judgment and apologized for it. Mr. Mwassera said that the people who orchestrated these problems misinformed him and that the killers did not came from Somalia, but from Kenyan, and he promised to take action against those who are behind these heinous crimes.
March 15, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
Breaking News from central Gharri region
On March 14, 2005, at 5: 30 am, Murale thugs raided Gharri village between EL Golicha and EL Qalla. They slaughtered twenty-two defenseless women, children, and wounded three.
March 10, 2005 by Gur Gharri GSG News Contributor
The Wajir DC and his team met with the Western Gharri region administrators, the Ethiopian government and security force’s representatives in Moyale on March 09, 2005. During the meeting, they discussed recent Qaddaduma incidents, but they failed to reach an agreement. The Kenyan delegates want to retrieve a seized vehicle and deceased soldier’s gun. However, they failed to sign documents saying Kenyan police forces were at fault about what has happened on March 5, 2005 in Qaddaduma. It was the Kenyan police force who caused the incident by disturbing the peace in and around the common border area. They crossed over to the Ethiopian a sovereign nation and raided Qaddaduma, which led to the seizure of their vehicle and the soldier’s death at first place. Our reporter said, that the Kenyan authorities agreed that they were at fault but said they did not have the authority to sign such documents. Therefore, the meeting was postponed until later date in the near future.
By Isaac Omar
INTRODUCTION: The Gharri people are also known as Gurreh, Garre, or Garri, by the Colonialist and they are located in Horn of Africa, (Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia)
Gharri people are believed to be from Arab descent. Like many other African Muslims, they trace their genealogy to the family of the prophet Mohammed (PBUH) “Qurash” They are divided into two major sub clans, Tuf and Quran (Quranyowa.) According to The Gharri oral traditions, almost all of the Gharri elders agree including Sheikh Abdiwahid, one of the well-respected Gharri elders from Gharri Konfur, Gharri was an arab immigrant who came from the Golf of Aden or possibly from “Yeman” He had two sons, Mohamed and Tuf. Mohamed died after he had one son Quran (quranyow). Quran was raised by his uncle Mr. Tuf. Later on he married Mako who is Tuf’s daughter and Quran’s first cousin. Then he (Quran) fathered two sons, Furkesha and Assare. Assarre had two sons, Bana and Kilia.
Furkesha, the brother of Assarre, had seven sons, they were Hodkoya, Birkaya, Hoytra, Darawa, Kalwesha, Hurdeq and “SUBUKITRE”.
Also, the second half of the Gharri branch is Tuf. Tuf is believed to be the uncle and father in law’s of Quran or quranyow, and he had two sons, Ali and Adola. Adola had eight sons. They were Kalwina, Kalmassa, Bursuni, Odomai, Maqabille, Med, Rer Mug and Tubadi.
The Tuf’s second son Ali had three SONS; their names are Kalula, Tawulle and Sabdhawa.But, Sabdawa splits into Rer Kule and Rer Tale. Also, Rer Tale divides into Barra, Rer Ido, Yabia,and Rer Gedi. So, today almost every Gharri person is belonging to one of the above mentioned sub clans of the Gharri people.
Note: Qoothe was missing from the 18 Century Sabdawa branch of Tuff list. Probably it is a combination of Rer Ido and Rer Gedi.
Gharri Tribal Leaders of 18, & 19 Century
Gababa Mohamed: Chief of the Gharri. Even though he lost one of his eye, he was described as “A man of few words but a great leader in battle.”
Mahad Hussein: He was Chief Gababa’s spokesperson and a man of wisdom.
Abdille Alio: Chief of the Gharri on the side of British Colony and he was said to be a pleasant old man and generous who seldom leaves his own village. But, he did not provide that much help to the British imperial army as chief.
Adowa Militia: Chief of the Oitera section. He succeeded his brother Hussein Militia. He was said to be non-cooperative to British army in regard to collecting tributes.they described him as a “full of fetina.” .
Amin Aden: Eldest son of the late Aden Shaba, he inherited chieftainship from his father as a Gharri Chief. He was described as thought of pleasant manners and good intentions. But, was not giving them that much help collecting tributes for them,
Diad Ibrahim: Chief of the Darawa section, but did not get along with Abdille Alio. Also, he was described as “very pro Somali”
Adan Emoi, Banna: Was made a headman by Captain Legg after all the other headsmen went to Ethiopia aka Abyssinia, but he was not of much help.
Hussein Shuno, Banna: Was put in at the same time as Adan Emoi and for the same reason. The British Colonial imperialist described him as “very dishonest and a great talker.”
Aden Biloka, Banna: Was made a chief along with Adan Emoi, and Hussein Shuno after previous Gharri tribal leaders went to Ethiopia (Abyssinia).
Mahad Mohamed, Darawa: Lives at El Wak. A youngish man and he was hired as a tax collector or tributes.
Sheik Omar Abdi, Tuff Subdawa: Lives at El Wak. He was described as “A young and energetic man better educated than most. Speaks Swahili. A good worker and says what he things, even then it is the truth; consequently he is disliked by the other headmen.”
Hassano Rago, Tuff Kalwein: Lives at El Wak. He was described as “A man of much influence and common sense. Is reliable and of few words.”
Hassan Kulu, Tuff Kalmansa: “An ambitious gentleman who would like to be a chief.”
Hassan Gababa: Headman of the Kilia section. He was a resident of El Wak.
Abdi Isak Ntello: He was described as “Has filled many offices. Was syce to Major Miles. Later he was a Tribal Retainer, but was discharged for theft. Took a fairly prominent part in the Gurreh raids of 1927.”
Sheik Webo: “Lives around Takaba. Attends most of the barazas and has influence, but says little. Is very holy.”
Shiek Ali Mohamed: “Brother of Gababa and squints. Was formerly Kadi, but knows little of the Islamic laws and takes bribes. An ineffective man. Lives at Mandera.”
Aden Ibrahim, Banna: “Commonly known as Jilbe. A cousin of Amin Aden. A youngish man who took a prominent part in the Gurreh raids of 1927. He dislikes the other Banna headmen exceedingly.”
Ali Yeri, Oitera: “A young and pushing fellow. An inveterate murderer and a proficient liar.”
Ali Buke, Tuff Kalwena: “Raised a force of 30 Abyssinians about 14 years ago and drove the Degodia out of Takaba. That year was still talked of as Ali Buke’s year.”
Ahamed Kiti, Banna: “An elderly man of Semitic appearance, who has considerable influence in the tribe and a great knowledge of Gurreh tradition. Mr. Pease obtained from him a large part of his data for his ethnological treaties.”
Sheik Ali Abdurhamman, Darawa: “A very holy man, the holiest in all Gurreh. Was living at Wajir, whence he went to Mecca and Cairo, and is now reported to be on his way back to Gurreh.”
Abdille Bala, Subdawa: “Chief of the Italian Gurreh at El Wak. Likes to interfere with matters on this side and is full of fetina.”
LANGUAGE: The Gharri people speak multi languages. They speak Affan Gharri Koffara, Somali, Swahili, Arabic, Affan Gharri, and Amharic. Many of these languages were learned through geographical cohabitation with others. The others were imposed on to them by the colonialist.
RELIGION: The Gharri populations are 100% Muslims.
AGRICULTURE: The Gharri depend upon live Stocks and life Stocks products. In the past, they have had abundant live Stocks and wild animals.
The Gharri people lost their livelihood due to looting and famine.
Their live Stocks were looted by the Emperor Haile Selassie and by the Dictator Mengistu Haile Mariam government’s soldiers and their tribal nomads.
Tradition: The Gharri people are peace loving, god fearing people with traditions and customs peculiar to themselves.
Wedding: The Gharri people practice arranged marriages. First, the parents of a groom SEND about a pound OF COFFEE, tea and Sugar, tied to the corner of small white sheet, possibly about two yards as a proposal to mary their daughter. If the family accepts the offer, they (bride family) respond by saying we heard you (la issan dhageene)
BARCHUMA NAQACHU: (ENGAGEMENT)
Few months later, the groom’s family follow up with something a little bit bigger to the mother of the bride as a gift to complete the engagement. Then the bride’s family says, “barchuma La Issani Dhabnee or kennine” (meaning we agreed for your son to marry our daughter) Depending on the season, soon after, the family of the groom will ask the bride’s family when they want to set a wedding date. At this point they either ACCEPTS the date or request to change the date to WHATEVER date that is convenient for them. On the wedding ceremony day, women from both side, the bride and the groom’s family supporters sing songs called “Isso Allima”, they sing about the bride’s family or clan usually a form of praising their son and daughter or TEASING ONE another, they sing a song about their son’s strengths and values.
MALE AND FEMALE TRADITIONAL SONGS,
the Gharri young boys sing songs about beautiful girls, as well as teasing songs that includes an insult and is embarrassments.
It’s called “Arrab ilman dhira.” in addition, the Gharri young men plays gonni, sarki, and Obbee tabachu. Gonni is a tagging game, or playing tag. Sarki is a form of dancing and show of strength for young men. it also, involves some form of wrsttling. and Obbee tabachis is target shooting with sharp sticks (Lawe) while obbee, (an circular object) is ROLLING FASTER
The Gharri young girls sing SONGS CALLED “Eerre-rerre.” They sing about their handsome brothers and beautiful sisters, as well as about their particular sub clan. Also they sing songs to tease fellow girls.
HAVING A BABY BOY:
Every Gharri household sacrifices ANIMALS AND has a feast to pray for their newborn sons and also gives the newborn an animal usually a calf or a heifer. In addition, they give their son an animal at the time of circumcision, if he does not cry during the circumcision as a gift for his courage.
fortunetellers. The Gharri people do have Fortunetellers. Tools needed to perform are as follows: Funno, (rope) Sandy ground for Faal, and Kopee (shoes). Funno is a short rope, approximately, about two yards long and it is performed mostly by middle age women. MEN PERFORM KOPEE AND FAAL. However some women can perform Faal too. It is used mostly during war time to predict numbers of casualties as well as successful operation. also it is used to locate lost herds, and or to predict a future event or events.
GHARRI’S INVENTIONS AND DISCOVERY:
among many inventions, Gharri INVETED ELEGANT Dasse, and Uttuba, (roofing and home building materials), Qorri, (wood Plat) muduna, (Wooden Cup) Moqa, (wooden Spoon) Garbisar, (Scarf) Borrati (Pillow), Sirre, Alluu,(red Paint) Uchum,(match), kokeed (wood shoes), Kopee Goga (lether shoes), , and many more.
HAWACHOW, (antibiotic) is used primarily to treat Gonorrhea and tape worms. Also, is used to treat a broad range of infections, muscle spasms, and backheach.
WARRA (DETERGANT) IS USED TO WASH GARMENTS.
Ollombo ((Anti inflamation) is used primarily to treat infected skins and to relief of pain and inflammation for both human and animals.
Urr: Is used to treat infectious disease caused by insect’s bits for Animals
Salmac (laxative) Is used to treat constipation
Qol Sotowesa: is used to treat hepatitis and Jaundice.
Ampee qumbi: is used to make INKS (Anqasti) FOR quranic writing, cast and incense
Dharkeen: is used primarily to treat fungus infections.
Qol Agarsu: is used as alternative tea and to make red paints for “Uttuba.”
Anan Dana: is used primarily to treat eczema (Robbi)
Traditional History of the Gharri Tribe and district
According to tradition, the Gharri District was originally inhabited by a Semitic tribe called the “ben Izraeli.” They extended beyond Wajir and dug the wells there. They also dug wells at Wergedud, Eil Illi, Hogerali, Goochi, and other places in this district…. The numerous graves along the Dawa River were also theirs, and their last stronghold was Hambali, near Gerba Harre, where the stone walls of their town were found.
However, they were weakened by pandemics and droughts. Soon they were attacked by 6 tribes consists of the Hirap, Jido, Eroli, Dubbare, Madda Ade, and Ajuran. The “ben Izraeli” was soon finished off and the Sultan of the Hirap ruled the land. Sometime later an Arab, Sheriff Nur, came down from the North with 30 Borana slaves and settled in the Hirap country. It was stated that the Hirap people stole Sheriff Nur’s only cow, then ate it. Shortly afterwards, Sheriff Nur demanded the return of his cow, but his cow had already been consumed by the Hirap. Consequently, a fight broke out and Sheriff Nur and his slaves became victorious. The Hirap were defeated and the rest of them escaped eastward. The Hirap fled to the Shebelle river while the Jido and Dubbare fled to the Rahanwein country or region towards the coast.
After this Sheriff Nur ruled the country until the Borana headman of the 30 slaves assassinated him, seizing the country and even his wife of Arab descent. The Borana King Gedo is said to have descended from this marriage. This ruling Borana family was thus half Arab and is said to have been much lighter in color than other Borana. It was also said that this Borana mixed race king had special qualifications for priesthood and religious ceremonies. They kept large and semi-sacred snakes for religious and ceremonial purposes as pets.
At this time the Gharri dwelt around Serar in what is now known as the Arusi region in Ethiopia, having originally come down from near the Red Sea coast through Harrar or Adarre, as the Gharri call it. Serar is located south of Harrar and about a 16 day journey by foot north of Dolo. Under pressure from enemies in the north, they migrated gradually to the southwest until they reached Filtu and Wachile which is in Southern Ethiopia. They stayed in these towns long enough to build houses and mosques, the remains of which are still visible to this day.
Through time, they came in contact with the Borana and lived side by side with Boranas for a while and spread southwards into the northern and western parts of the present day Mandera district aka “Gharri district”, until the Borana tried to control their lives and demanded payments for grazing. The Gharri objected to the Borana’s demands and decided to move again. The Gharri leaders, Sheik Bule Hussein, went out looking for a new country and travelled down the Juba and through Rahanwein to Confur(East) and decided it was a good country. On his return he told the Gharri to spread rumors among the Borana that he was exposed to a contagious disease during his travels. Then he came up with a superb strategy. He and his slaves prepared a red blood like red drink by boiling the bark of a tree. Then, sheikh Bule Hussein and his slaves drank bowls of it prior to start of the Borana meeting. They went to the Borana meeting and soon as it commenced the slaves started reacting to the home made bloody drink they have had drunk and began vomiting a red blood like substance. Soon the Sheik fabricated signs of illness. Then, the Borana got up in disbelief and fled. Sheik and his slaves then dug two graves and set up tombstones. The Boran returning concluded that the new disease was indeed fatal and fled westward away from the Gharri villages. Sheik Bule seized the opportunity and led the Gharri people to the east through the desert country of northern Jubaland.
However, the Gabbra and the Rendille sections of the Gharri tribes were left behind. The Gabbra had many camels and could not take them all in their flight across the desert. They saw it was a choice between their camels and the staying with the rest of the Gharri and said “We can live without the Gharri but not without camels” so they stayed behind with the Borana. Also, the Rendille were camel owners who had moved further south and did not get the news of the evacuation in time. Their name, by tradition, is derived from “Rer Did”
The Rendille and Gabra lost the Muslim religion, but, they retained the same camel brands used by the Gharri. Also, they kept a simple marriage ceremony comparable to that performed by Gharri and a blessing prayer in the Gharri Confur dialect that has been passed on from generations ago.
Meanwhile the Gharri fled eastwards through Jubaland and people and livestock were perishing from thirst by the time they reached Afmadu. However, they all got across the Juba safely and reached the Confer country where they settled and prospered. However, a small group from the Kalia, Banna, and Birkaya areas were so weakened that they were left behind at the Juba and switched gears toward the coast and landed between Kismayu and Lamu. They settled with the Bajun away from the Gharri Confur who settled in the city of Shan and Musser located in Owdegli located in lower Shebelle, Somalia.
Then well established and prosperous Gharri penetrated into Rahanwein and sent trading safaris and settlers further and further inland until they reached the Lugh and Dolo districts again. They engaged in trade mostly, but also made settlements and shambas along the way. Finally, they got back to Wachile where Sheik Abdi Hiloli started a settlement and traded with the Boran many centuries ago. His grave is there in Wachile and when these settlers reached the upper Dawa and Wachile, they met the Gabbra camel owners who were left behind during Sheik Bule Hussein’s migration to Somalia. They recognized them by their camel brands and by their Gharri section names Banna, Birkaya which they still retained. Surprisingly, they still preserved some Gharri customs and that their women, unlike the Boran, wore hagogo or head scarfs covering their head as the rest of the married Gharri women do.
Since the Gharri exodus a new tribe had come down from the north, the Wardeh. They are an Oromo speaking tribe of Hamitic origin, but not related to the Boran. This tribe occupied all the central parts of the Gharri disctrict and extended eastwards to Afmadu and southwards to El Wak, Wajir, and the Tana. The Gharri settlers were confined to the river and the Wachile area. They lived on friendly terms with the Boran, acquired livestock, adopted the Boran tongue and those in the north and west forgot the Gharri language, a Somali dialect, entirely.
During this time, a holy man by the name of Isak a Somali Sheikh settled among the Wardeh in the Afmadu area and took presents from them for his spiritual services. He asked one day for 100 livestock and promised a special prayer for their prosperity. The Wardeh agreed. On the appointed day the Sheik went into his house and prayed. The Wardeh brought 100 dogs instead of live stocks and tied them all around the house, and called the Sheik and said “We keep 3 kinds of beasts – dogs, goats, and cattle. Do you take the first?” The enraged Sheikh then cursed them saying “I pray to God you will be the dogs of this country”. Shortly after, all the Muslim tribes and every section of Somali combined and attacked the Wardeh. The Mohamed Zubeir, Aulihan Marehan, and Telemuggar drove them across Jubaland while the Rahanwein tribes, Gharri, Shermoge,and Gabbawein, attacked them from Lugh and Dolo. The Boran also joined in and raided them from the northwest with the Gharri settlers from Wachile. The Wardeh were attacked from all sides and were practically wiped out. Large numbers were enslaved by the Mohamad Zubeir clan and other Somali tribes, many more were sold as slaves to Zanzibar and Lumi. Only about half a dozen villages of Wardeh escaped across the Tana river. The war was known as the Aji and Galla struggle. They speak of themselves as Oromo, not as Galla or Wardeh.
According information given by Ahmed Kiti, one of the best known and most intelligent of Gharri elders, to a British official in charge of Gharri district at the time, many Gharri elders of his father’s generation participated in the raids at Wachile against the Wardeh. Also, his father fought once at Gerba Gelo, about the center of this district, and twice in the El Wak area and re-occupied Wachile with Sheik Abdi Hiloli around 1800 and the Wardeh all-out war at around 1850. By then, the Wardeh were finally driven out of this district, but small fights continued to happen years later.
The Boran now occupied the entire interior of the Gharri district and much of the present Marehan inhabited Gedo region including Garba Harre. They did not however live in peace for long in the district. The Gharri were growing stronger because most of the new comers became Gharri by way of “Shegat” aka Gharri Shegat.” What this means is they promise to do three things before they could be accepted to become adopted to the Gharri people.
1. Promise to fight alongside the Gharri people in case of war.
2. Promise to pay blood money with the Gharri people when the occasion arises
3. Promise to support the Gharri for any issue at any gathering.
So, through these processes, the confederacy of the Gharri, Gharri Marro, and newly converted Gharri Shegats like the Gobawein started to continuously force the Boran out of the district. Also, two subsections of the Marehan, the Rer Hassan and Ali Dhere, fought the Boran near Gerba Harre with the help of Rahanwein and Shermoge. Subsequently, the Boran was pushed westward from Garba Harre and Neboi.
However, the Gharri people were not left alone in the Gharri district for too long. The first Degodia immigrants arrived in Korume near Neboi in 1902. They became Shegat to the Shaba Alio and Ali Abdi, and the Marehan tribes soon started pressing from the east as the Gerba Harre country filled up. At this point however, the period of recorded history is reached.
There is also, slight deferring version of the traditional history re-Gharri district’s origiona inhabitants
There is a different story of the original inhabitants of the old Gharri district that says that the Madanle were the original inhabitants of the country. They were a negroid tribe like the “Wata”. A few of them are now living in Southern Ethiopia in the Nagelle District and recently broke away from the Boran, declaring themselves as Wayu Oromo. Then, the “ben Izraeli” came from Egypt and drove out these people who were called the “Buri-burri”. The last remnants of the “ben Izraeli” when they were driven out escaped to the coast and became the ancestors of the Barawa or “Abu Jebel” people now living in Somalia. These people were described as very light in color and of Semitic appearance, but not of Arab blood. However, they do claim to be Arabs.
The number of graves along the Dawa suggests that the river population was larger than today’s generation. These graves are neither Gharri nor Boran and they usually lay together in quantities of 50 to 100 graves, sometimes placed in regular rows. They have tombstones at the head and feet which lay east and west, and these stones were said to be 9 and 10 feet apart in average. This validates the tradition that says the Mandale were very tall.
In comparison with the Gharri and Somali graves, the tombstones are put at the ends of the hole dug for the grave and are usually about 6 ft apart for average adult male. In most cases nothing is left but the upright stones at the head and the foot.
According to some Gharri elders or historians, all the circular cairns of stone in the district and many in the river area were Madanle graves; others say the smaller piles are Boran and Wardeh graves. The Wardeh and Boran bury their dead tied up in a sitting position in shallow graves covered up with a pile of stones on the top.
Gharri and Somali graves face east and west covered with a small mound of soil over the graves, in accordance with Islamic tradition. Sometimes two tombstones of wood were set up at the head and foot. Also, the Gharri graves are usually placed by a road intended for the onlookers to pray for the dead.
The wells in this district and many other locations including southern Ethiopia, aka Tula Saglaan, were dug by the Mandale or “Ben Izraeli.”
These artifacts of a vanished race as well as the existing race are of course ample evidence to validate the oral traditional history of the Madanle and beyond.
In regards to the Gharri tradition, the oral history is generated from the existing facts. The Gharri people have left remnants behind all along the path of their migration.
According to Gharri oral tradition given by previous Gharri elders, the Gharri people have left their remnants behind all along the track of their migrations. It was said that there were known cases, where some Gharri men came from the Bajun Country between Kismayu and Lamu and said to have gotten livestock from relatives in Gharri District. It has been confirmed that there are families of Bana, Birkaya, and Kilia descent living in the Bajun Country. Also, there are quite a large number of Gharri, mostly of the Odkoya and Oordek clans still living up in the Arusi country near Serar, which is next to the Gura tribe in Ethiopia.
Some Gharri elders suggest that the Gharri people went straight from Serar, Arusi region, Ethiopia to the Confur country of Somalia. However, there is no question that there is compelling evidence that the Gharri originated from the north and that they migrated southwest, along with Somali tribes. Therefore, we can make a reasonable assertion that the Gharri came down across the red sea and settled in Arusi region aka “Serar” in Ethiopia, as tradition says, and left a remnant of them behind.
There are great numbers of the Gharri tribe still living in Somalia aka “Gharri Confur” around Owdegil, Welwayein, Farsolayle, Afgoy, and Qoriyole, areas in lower Shebelle, Somalia.
In conclusion: The Gharri settlers of the last century undoubtedly came from Somalia through Lugh and Dolo. So, if we believe and accept the existence of linkage between the Gharri, the Gabra and Rendille clans, this will also confirm that the Gharri tribe originally came down from the Arusi, via Filtu and Wachile. This means that the resettlement of 200 years ago was simply a reoccupation of land they once lost to the Borana centuries ago.
This article was created by Isaac Omar and Published by Gur Gharri