Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, 27 February 2018 (ECA) – The African Land Policy Centre (ALPC) in partnership with the Government of Côte d’Ivoire organized a workshop on 27 February 2018 to validate the country report and business plan on Mainstreaming Land Governance in the National Agricultural Investment Plan of the Comprehensive Africa Agricultural Development Programme (NAIP/CAADP).
The workshop was held in the context of a project being piloted in six selected countries, namely, Cote d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Madagascar, Malawi, Rwanda and Tanzania, that seeks solutions to land governance challenges that hamper progress agricultural transformation. ALPC, with the support of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the European Union (EU) is implementing the project in line with its commitment towards facilitating the implementation of the AU Agenda on land. In Cote d’Ivoire, the pilot is being executed by the Ministry of Agriculture and the Rural Land Agency.
In his opening remarks Mr. N'cho Xavier Douad, a Deputy Director in the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development stressed the importance of this timely project, which has, in essence, provided critical inputs to the second phase of the NAIP in has taken Côte d’Ivoire’s. He added that Côte d'Ivoire prioritizes the land issue and has in this regard, “undertaken major reforms, including the adoption of the 1998 law on rural land property, the domestication of the AU declaration of land in Côte d'Ivoire and the establishment of a rural land agency.”
Ms. Joan Kagwanja, Coordinator of the African Land Policy Centre, expressed appreciation to the government in the various ministries, and in particular the Ministry of Agriculture and the Rural Land Agency for their support and commitment in spearheading the project. She thanked IFAD for partnering with the ALPC on the 6 country pilot project, which is also drawing on resources from the European Union (EU) and the German organization for Technical Cooperation (GIZ) in areas related to M&E, and capacity development.
Ms. Kagwanja reminded participants of the commitments in the AU Agenda on Land, as summarized in the Declaration on Land Issues and Challenges in Africa (2009), stating that it “Commits AU-Heads of State and Governments to prioritize and lead in land policy review/development processes, support appropriate institutional mechanisms, and budgetary resources in support of development and implementation of land policies.”
“A study by the Land Policy Initiative in 2013 highlighted a key deficiency in the National Agricultural Investment Plans, notably that land governance issues were not well articulated, nor were the links to departments that facilitate land management adequately included.” She stressed the need “to better integrate the work that the ministries of agriculture does, with that of the ministry of lands for better outcomes.”
For his part Mr. David Loue Deputy Director of the Rural Land Agency, noted that the workshop’s subject highlights the relevance of land issues on many aspects, emphasizing connections to peace and social cohesion; Agricultural investments, productivity enhancement, sustainability and fighting against malnutrition and poverty.
“The High level attendance to this workshop leads to high hopes for a very successful outcome in support of Cote d’Ivoire’s goals for securing land tenure for all.” he stated.
The validation workshop follows a continental launch in October 2016 in Addis Ababa, and an inception workshop held in Abidjan in July 2017. The workshop successfully validated the entry points for the Rural Land Agency to address land governance challenges that hamper agricultural transformation in accordance with the 2014 Malabo Declaration. Participants of the workshop included representatives of land and agricultural ministries, stakeholders in agricultural development and farmers’ organizations, public administration, development partners, the private sector, academia, civil society organizations, amongst others.
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