It’s time we break down the barriers to women’s access to land and protect women’s rights while the pandemic places them in a precarious situation
Not only is the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) having serious health impacts around the world, it also has the potential to significantly affect the housing, land, and property (HLP) of women and girls, particularly in low and middle-income countries.
Women at a disadvantage
By Catherine Benson Wahlén, Thematic Expert for Human Development, Human Settlements and Sustainable Development (US)
I write this blog as our project team embarks on a fifth year of work on women’s land tenure security (WOLTS) with pastoral communities in mining-affected areas of Mongolia and Tanzania. Just before Christmas 2019, we were in Mundarara village in northern Tanzania. Exceptionally heavy rains made getting around much more challenging than usual. Locals travelling on foot had to make wide detours to avoid getting bogged down in waterlogged grazing land, and it took everyone much longer to get to the village primary school for our long-planned training day.
The Rangelands Initiative of the International Land Coalition (ILC) is drawing attention to rangelands and drylands at the highest levels, in order to find solutions to the challenges faced by local populations that live and work there, and to encourage appropriate investment including in securing land rights and good governance, building resilience to drought and other shocks or stresses, and increasing rangeland productivity.
A recent policy seminar at IFPRI presented an upcoming CGIAR publication on the topic
- Participation and sectoriality in development
Cosmas Milton Ochieng, an expert in natural resource governance and economic development in Africa, is the Director of the African Natural Resource Centre at the African Development Bank.
In collaboration with the African Union Commission and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, the African Development Bank will host the 3rd Edition of the Conference on Land Policy in Africa in Abidjan from 25 to 29 November 2019.
In this interview, Ochieng shares key insights into why the conference matters for Africa.
Africa is a rich continent. It has vast agricultural and land resources and thus the potential to feed all people living on the continent. We observe technological improvements in agriculture, as well as in geospatial sciences and other relevant land sectors. Thus, the tools are available to implement policies to ensure fair and sustainable land policy in every country. However, there is still a considerable gap in what is proven to work and what is implemented in many countries.
The Declaration on Land Issues and Challenges in Africa very wisely prioritised three key objectives:
- Land policy development and implementation;
- Allocation of adequate budgetary resources to land management and administration;
- And the establishment of enabling conditions for institutional innovation in land policy and governance frameworks on the continent.
As we gather here today, so much has been achieved over the past decade. And yet we know that a great deal of work still remains to be done.
Next week the Conference on Land Policy in Africa (CLPA) - Winning the Fight against Corruption in the Land Sector: Sustainable Pathway for Africa’s Transformation, will take place in Abidjan. The African Union recognises that corruption is a key factor hampering efforts at promoting governance, socio-economic transformation, peace and security, and the enjoyment of human rights in the Member States.