Tracking Progress In Land Policy Formulation And Implementation In Africa

Background Document
Tracking Progress In Land Policy Formulation And Implementation In Africa

Cognizant of the centrality of land policy issues in Africa, a joint initiative was undertaken by the African Union Commission (AUC), United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) in 2006, forming the genesis of the Land Policy Initiative (LPI). Through the LPI important actions and measures have been launched including a series of regional studies on land issues across Africa accompanied by rigorous consultations and discussions at regional and continental levels. During the whole process, the immediate and urgent need to develop and implement a tracking system to monitor land policy formulation and implementation has been underlined in bold. Subsequently, the LPI produced a series of documents and consultation papers on land issues and policy monitoring as early as 2007. In 2009, the African Heads of States endorsed the Framework and Guidelines on Land Policy in Africa (F&G) which flagged the shared visions, objectives and principles on land policy matters. These pinpointed the urgent need to track progress in land policy formulation and implementation, among other issues. The F&G outline the functions of the tracking system, and the principles and criteria to be used to develop it. This background document, Tracking Progress in Land Policy Formulation and Implementation in Africa, therefore draws on the F&G, on a review of a series of land monitoring reports produced by LPI and other pertinent literatures. The first draft of this report was presented during the Expert Group Meeting (EGM) held in Addis Ababa from 8 to 9 December 2011; useful inputs from the meeting were used to finalize the document. Broadly, its key purpose is to define a relevant, flexible and pragmatic system for tracking progress in land reform in Africa and design a strategic road map to realize the proposed tracking system.

The report is structured into eight chapters. Chapters 1 and 2 elaborate on the background and the need and importance of tracking systems for land policy. The expected key functions and purpose of the tracking system is described in brief in Chapter 2, primarily based upon the F&G document. As a prelude to the succeeding chapters, Chapter 3 highlights definitions and concepts on key monitoring and evaluation terms and principles in general and on land policy matters in particular. Chapter 4 discusses the predominant tenure regimes in Africa and highlights the issues of diversity in land tenure systems across the African continent followed by convergent tenure themes and issues. With scarce data available on current tenure profiles across the continent, it summarizes how far along African countries are in developing and implementing the New Land Policy Reform. Chapter 5 reviews currently available widely used monitoring frameworks. These are mainly used by inter-governmental organizations (IGOs), government agencies, civil society organizations (CSOs) and continental development programmes initiated by global initiatives such as the Millennium Development Goals (MDG) and others. The chapter concludes by drawing key lessons from existing monitoring frameworks widely used by multiple organizations.

Chapter 6, the core of the report, outlines the purpose, scope and scale, the system for tracking progress, indicator development processes and the strategic road map for developing and implementing the tracking system across the continent. Based on the results chain process, 42 and 30 indicators were compiled for “formal” and “customary” tenure regimes respectively. The report focuses on developing the national level monitoring system, but linking it to the continental level and eventually leading in the mid-term to developing a Land Policy Reform Index (LPRI) based on common themes and indicators. Key concepts and considerations for institutionalizing a Participatory Tracking System (PTS) are briefly described. This calls for preparing an instructional manual followed by piloting in selected countries. To implement the tracking system at full scale across the continent an incremental and phased approach is suggested. The first phase includes processes of gathering and synthesizing relevant information including the piloting exercise to produce the draft framework on the tracking system. The subsequent phase aims to finalize the draft framework and develop the LPRI. Key interventions and activities embedded under the two phases are elaborated in detail. The second phase encompasses launching the implementation of the agreed framework and manual in selected African countries on an incremental basis.

Chapter 7 provides summary illustrations of key elements in developing the tracking system. These include key dimensions for identifying locally credible indicators and relevant regional level land reform indices drawing from ongoing experiences in Asia. Finally, Chapter 8 summarizes the recommendations the necessary prerequisites for implementing the proposed tracking system. Actions and measures necessary to implement the process and guarantee the sustainability of the proposed system are briefly described.