Land week: the debates also covered regional planningLand week:

Practical case studies on the agenda

Spatial planning can improve the security of land tenure, that’s indeed what the plethora of land experts and practitioners gathered this January 22, 2019 at the Palais de Congrès in Yaoundé think.

Between defining the concepts, scope, objectives and principles of land management,  this meeting shows just how much sharing experience between the continent’s civil society players can be life-saving.

Tanzania is a case in point. Dr. Stephen Nindi, Director of Tanzania’s National Land Use Planning Commission, explained that in Tanzania “villages are the first level of the planning process. There are also common land-use plans by villages that determine their particular needs. These communities also integrate the land use plan, which indicates what they want to see in the next twenty years.”  He also mentioned that “The local planning system in Tanzania allows people to have ownership over recognized land. Villages own 78% of the land, and management takes place under state control.

This approach is part of a dynamic aimed primarily at helping the various land users increase their productivity, with a view to achieving social justice for all.

It should be noted that the approach also aims to curb conflicts and ensure the conservation of a given area. This planning is carried out at different levels, from the village to the district, and even up to the national level.

The discussions that followed centered on Participatory Mapping, a local land-use planning tool experimented with in Cameroon much more by civil society organizations. Discussions focused on how lessons learned in Tanzania could be transposed to the Cameroonian context.

The main aim of the meeting, which was to “contribute to better governance of land tenure and land use planning in Cameroon”, was to give participants a better understanding of land use planning as a tool for improving the security of land tenure.
Better still, it enabled participants to learn from land use planning experiences in other African countries.

If land governance is a delicate issue, it’s because land is subject to apprehensions and appropriations that are both competing and divergent, revealing the heterogeneous orientations of individual and collective social actors on this subject.

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