Opening remarks for the GIZ Land Governance Knowledge Exchange Workshop | Land Portal

Opening remarks for the GIZ Land Governance Knowledge Exchange Workshop delivered by

Dr Arno Sckeyde, Head of Program, Strengthening Advisory Capacities for Land Governance in Africa (SLGA) 

Dr. Klaus Ackermann, Head of Global Program Responsible Land Policy


Your Excellency, Madam Minister, Distinguished guests, Ladies and Gentlemen, 

We express gratitude to the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development for co-hosting the GIZ Land Governance Knowledge Exchange Workshop and providing the platform to meet and discuss how collectively to increase our efforts towards responsible and sustainable land governance. It is a huge pleasure to be together now after postponing this event for two years. 

Complex, interlinked challenges such as food security, land and forest degradation, climate change, migration, and fragile regions are exacerbated by crises like COVID and wars in different parts of the world, including Europe. 

Everywhere we can find successful and promising examples of agriculture, soil rehabilitation, and other solutions. Despite all these efforts, the general trend appears to be worsening and increasing pressure on land resources. Fare and secure land rights and responsible land governance are becoming ever more important! I assume we agree: Secure land rights and responsible land governance are key. 

We have been supporting our partners in various fields of land governance for more than six years across two programs:  Global Programme on Responsible Land Policy and Strengthening Advisory Capacities for Land Governance in Africa (SLGA).

>We are currently working in seven countries. We support our partners in the improvement of procedures for the formalization of land rights – both individual and collective – with a focus on women and marginalized groups. We work together with and strengthen capacities of CSOs, important actors within the land sector. We work on responsible investments in land, agriculture, and forestry. Our programs are co-financed by the EU. 

Within SLGA, NELGA is a continental network of 70 partner universities in Africa coordinated by so-called “nodes” in each region. The network aims to support universities in becoming prominent actors of the land debate at national, regional, and continental levels through capacity-building, curricula development, and research. The goal is to support evidence-based policy making and implementation.  

Both programs still have several years of implementation left. It is an important time to come together 

  • >to share, exchange knowledge, experiences, and successes 
  • to reflect on strategic questions and challenges such as scaling land registration nationwide; sustainable land administration systems including financing; empowering women also via tenure security
  • to draw conclusions and to formulate recommendations to ourselves for the years to come

As a development partner, it is essential for GIZ to know where best to support our partners in their initiatives and priorities aimed at sustainable and responsible land governance.

Now the work begins! 

At this juncture, allow us to express much appreciation to the African Land Policy Centre (ALPC) for the continued support towards policy advocacy, reforms and capacity building at different levels of land administration structures within the African Union Member States. 

We thank GIZ for its unwavering financial support to both programs since 2014, without which we won't be able to deliver our mandate in Africa. 

We also thank our partner ministries as well as partner institutions in the countries where the two programs are being implemented for their support and engagement. 

We also want to extend our appreciation to our partner, the African Union Commission, for its partnership with the German government, the NELGA project, and for allowing us to engage in policy spaces. we look forward to our continued collaboration. 

Lastly, a huge appreciation to the Government of Uganda and the Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development for inviting us to your beautiful country with its rich history and sharing with us your road map towards developing an enabling land governance landscape for the people. 

Indeed, it is an honor and a privilege for us to convene this workshop. Over the years, many of you in this room have proven to be some of our most engaged development partners. We appreciate your continued support and partnership. 

So… welcome to you all, and I hope you have a fruitful Knowledge Exchange Workshop.

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