A number of previous studies have emphasized the determinants of land-use change, as well as the management of communal lands in the pastoral systems, without assessing the effects of such changes on pastoralists/agro-pastoralists’ food security. Therefore, the objective of this paper was to assess the determinants of food security under changing land use and land management systems—from communal to private investment—using household survey data collected from pastoral and agro-pastoral communities. The data were analyzed using ordinary least-square econometric analysis. The results showed that having sufficient land for crop farming, competition over land for private use, number of plots, use of improved seeds, access to infrastructure, and distance from main markets have a negative impact on food security. However, conflict with neighbors and use of crop residue as livestock feed have a positive impact on food security; impacts were also shown to affect geographically distributed pastoral and agro-pastoral communities differently. There are a number of constraints associated with such land-use changes in order to improve land productivity on privately held land, including unstable market prices, reducing the benefits from irrigated farming, moisture stress where pastoral land classified as arable suffers from water unavailability and expansion of gullies resulting in abandonment of farmland. In conclusion, land conversion to encourage pastoralists to take up sedentary farming to ensure food security will only accelerate rangeland degradation. Therefore, it is imperative that investment in land management be complemented with other interventions, which can thereby increase land productivity, for example, adoption of drought tolerant crops, water harvesting, enhancing pastoralists/agro-pastoralists’ technical knowledge and improved marketing infrastructure.
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