The Go-Between - Afar of Ethiopia
A woman is reported killed - another case for Hussein.
The Isamic pastoral Afars inhabit the north eastern rangelands of Ethiopia. Some have settled in towns and trade centres where also the Ethiopian government is present with the police and other government officials. Many Afars have a foot in both sectors, having a home in town while maintaining close contact with their nomadic relatives.
Hussein Hayie has a government position as Peace and Security officer. His work is to judge whether an incident should be handled as a criminal case for the police or be left as a case to be solved the traditional way by the elders of the clans. The Afar political organization is based on both territory and kinship. The political institutions are geared towards social control and the resolution of conflicts. The tribal leaders are often called upon to intervene before a small matter escalates to homicide and if homicide occurs, to work out agreements of compensation in order to avoid blood-feuds.
The film follows Hussein Hayie in town and when he visits his families in the nomadic camps. As a government employee he is continuously on duty and in the film we see how he is called to act.