Securing Land Rights in Africa

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Currently, Liberia’s Senate is considering legislation that would dramatically strengthen land rights for farmers, including female farmers. Many other countries in Africa (notably Rwanda and Zambia) and in Asia (including Myanmar and India) have done, or are planning to do, the same. These efforts should be supported, expedited, and replicated.
Yet people are not waiting for their leaders to act. Innovative technologies are already providing a path forward for communities in countries with unwilling or incapable governments. Advances in GPS, drones, and cloud computing have given communities the ability to document land – with or without official recognition or support. Together with the Cadasta Foundation, communities from Nigeria to India are using hand-held devices to map property and support land claims with hard evidence, thereby allowing for incremental strengthening of tenure.
Liberia’s drive to spearhead a continent-wide overhaul of land rights is welcome; leaders like Sirleaf clearly understand the challenges that come with weak land laws. But structural changes will take time. In the absence of more assertive government intervention, it will be up to communities and individuals to leapfrog conventional efforts and fill in the blank spaces on the map.

Copyright: Project Syndicate 2017 – Securing Land Rights in Africa

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A warsame

Published by A Warsame is senior Editor and managing Director of Mareeg Media Whatup :+447737886245
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