Securing land tenure rights for farmers in Sierra Leone | FAO

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Two-thirds of Sierra Leone’s inhabitants is concerned in subsistence agriculture. Farmers – most of them ladies – function in an off-the-cuff and precarious system with none authorized titles to their lands.  Within the aftermath of the nation’s 11 yr civil warfare, the federal government of Sierra Leone started a protracted overdue course of to modernise its land tenure system and put in place enabling insurance policies so that every parcel of land might be put to its most economically beneficial use.

Sierra Leone isn’t any stranger to reforming insurance policies or drafting legal guidelines on land tenure. What marked a departure from conventional policy-making was that for the primary time within the nation’s historical past, not solely did ministers sit with civil society and companies to debate cross-cutting points on tenure governance, however additionally they used the Voluntary Pointers on the Accountable Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forestry (VGGT) as a guiding drive in drafting a brand new land coverage that was truthful, straightforward to implement and accepted by everybody.

“The success in implementing the VGGT comes as a direct results of technical working teams, a steering committee, an inter-ministerial job drive and non-state actors similar to Non-governmental organizations, Civil Society Organizations, personal sector and conventional leaders all working collectively in a structured institutional framework,” stated Jobo Samba, Sierra Leone’s Deputy Director of Geographic Info System and Distant Sensing, Ministry of Lands, Nation Planning and the Setting.

Inclusive dialogue results in higher work ethic and outcomes

Common promotion of dialogue between concerned stakeholders, resulted in improved coverage coherence for higher outcomes throughout ministries as every official introduced a set of abilities and expertise that complemented one another. This inclusive approach of working served to translate the brand new coverage on land tenure into actions and programmes. Because of working collectively, coverage coherence improved as did outcomes throughout ministries.

“This has been an excellent expertise: our work ethic has improved,” stated Kadijatu Zainab Bangura, State Counsellor of the Ministry of Justice. “Quite than simply concentrating on our personal mandate, we now seek the advice of and replace one another on a month-to-month foundation and we do the job collectively.”

The Nationwide Land Coverage and the Fisheries Methods of Sierra Leone  had been adopted in 2015, incorporating VGGT rules, similar to recognizing, respecting and safeguarding all professional tenure holders and their rights and stopping tenure disputes, battle and corruption, amongst others.

The federal government acknowledged FAO’s technical assist as key to establishing an institutional framework that promoted dialogue amongst all concerned actors.

“The intervention of FAO in bringing about battle decision on this complete course of was extraordinarily helpful,” defined Joseph Rahall, Govt Director of Inexperienced Surroundings, a company that advocates the rights of communities and land possession.

Talking on behalf of the Authorities of Sierra Leone, Finda Diana Konomanyi, Minister of Lands, Nation Planning and the Setting stated, “FAO has been instrumental in offering technical assist throughout the formulation course of within the improvement of the plan in addition to mobilizing donor assist.”

The feminine face of farming

Ladies characterize 70 % of the agricultural labour drive of Sierra Leone, holding an necessary function in pure useful resource administration and meals manufacturing. Regardless of their contribution, nonetheless, ladies are sometimes discriminated in opposition to and denied possession, entry to or management of land. As well as, discriminatory, customary and statutory legal guidelines that favour males hinder the financial influence of ladies’s agricultural actions.

Now, due to new land tenure insurance policies, farmers – female and male – have hopes to construct a brighter future with out fearing eviction from their land.

“It will be important that girls take part as equal decision-making companions within the fairness and distribution of land and that they aren’t subordinated to lesser roles,” defined Julia Fofanah, Nation Supervisor of Conservation Alliance Sierra Leone, a non-governmental environmental group.

Success on the bottom

Quite a lot of districts in Sierra Leone at the moment are adopting the VGGT, proving their effectiveness to result in constructive and lasting change. The District Councils of Kailahun and Bo have built-in them into their 2016-18 Improvement Plans.

“Studying in regards to the VGGT has been necessary as a result of I can, not solely prepare myself but in addition the individuals in my neighborhood, in order that they can also reap the advantages,” stated Mohamed Fofaneh, City Chief Port Loko District.

The taking part districts are dedicated to growing consciousness in regards to the VGGT and to utilizing them in growing pointers for agricultural investments.


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