Forest landscape restoration and related initiatives are instrumental for countries working to meet their national commitments linked to the Bonn Challenge and the New York Declaration of Forests (NYDF). These efforts will have significant socio-ecological impacts affecting hundreds of millions of hectares of land and forests and large numbers of people over the course of the next decades.
An estimated 80 percent of the land in sub-Saharan Africa is held by Indigenous Peoples and local communities under customary rights regimes. Yet, Indigenous Peoples and local communities enjoy legal recognition to just 16 percent of the total land in Africa. While African countries provide the most consistent recognition of women’s property rights and the greatest recognition of women’s community-level dispute-resolution rights when compared to other regions, they afford the weakest community-level inheritance and voting rights to Indigenous and rural women Rights and Resources Initiative (Power and Potential). Reform processes continue across the continent, and opportunities to improve forest restoration and land governance have been identified at the regional level and in many countries in Africa, particularly in Kenya and Madagascar.
Organized by the Rights and Resources Initiative (RRI), this panel will draw from diverse country and stakeholder experiences to demonstrate why securing tenure rights for Africa’s Indigenous Peoples, local communities, and rural women is essential to landscape restoration as well as to creating peaceful, secure, prosperous, and sustainable societies. In an innovative-format discussion, the panel will spark dialogue around land tenure and legal reform, barriers to securing land and resource rights, and challenges raised by restoration. Where community land and resource rights are secure, deforestation rates are lower and carbon storage rates are higher. Secure tenure rights are also a vital prerequisite for forest peoples to successfully engage with and benefit from restoration programs to improve the management of forests for poverty reduction, biodiversity conservation, and climate protection.
Speakers and focus:
Patrick Kipalu, Africa Program Coordinator, RRI: Why securing community tenure rights is crucial to forest landscape restoration.
Peter Kitelo, Kenya Forest Indigenous Peoples Network (FIPN):The journey to community land justice for the Forest Indigenous Communities of Kenya.
Milka Chepkorir, Anthropologist and Member of the the Sengwer Indigenous Peoples, Kabolet forest: Available opportunities for indigenous women in ecological and landscape restoration.
Raymond Samndong; Monitoring, Evaluation, Learning and Reporting Manager; the Tenure Facility: The importance of scaling up implementation of land and forest tenure reform policies and legislationand enabling governments and communities to test new tools, strategies and approaches to securing land and forest tenure
Jean Ousmane Camara, National Coordinator, Madagascar Land Reform Coordination Unit (CCRF): A discussion of the progressive legal framework in Madagascar’s progressive legal framework and decentralized land governance system: what link between land and investments in forest landscape restoration.
Shadrack Omondi, Chairman of ILC Africa and Audace Kubwimana, Africa Program Manager: The role of Multi Stakeholder Platforms (MSPs) in enhancing land governance and restoration in Africa (Case of ILC-National Engagement Strategies/NES processes) with a focus on Madagascar.