Government will streamline operations in the land sector †Kamel

Accra, Aug. 4, GNA – Mr Henry Ford Kamel, Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, on Thursday announced that government was critically reviewing operations in the land sector and would soon put a bill before Parliament to streamline operations in the sector.


He said the Land Administration Project (LAP) which started sometime ago had become lopsided and not beneficial to landowners.


Mr Kamel was speaking at a symposium organised by the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources (MLNR) in collaboration with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as part of activities to celebrate International Year of Forest in Accra.


It was attended by representatives from Forestry Commission, civil society organisations, traditional authorities and legal practitioners on the theme: “Securing land/tree tenure rights and benefits towards Reduce Emissions from Deforestation in Developing Countries (REDD) implementation in Ghana”.


Mr Kamel said sustainable management of the country’s natural resources was important because the life and survival of Ghanaians depended on it, adding, “If we are not able to manage our forest resources well, then our very existence as human beings is at stake.”


He noted that some officials at the Lands Commission had been falsifying documents to favour some people who did not deserve to benefit from LAP.


Mr Kamel gave the assurance that the Ministry was instituting measures to ensure that both land and forest resources were protected for the benefit of all and sundry.


Mr Stewart Maginnis, Executive Director of IUCN, said resource tenure was key to shaping the distribution of risks, costs and benefits of natural resources since it encompasses the system of rights, rules, institutions and processes that regulated access and use of these resources.


He said while insecure tenure made local people vulnerable to dispossession as land values increased, secure resource tenure offered them more leverage in relations with government and the private sector.


Mr Maginnis said in recent time, land tenure issues were increasingly gaining international attention particularly with regard to REDD and Forest Investment Programme (FIP) due to the important role tenure played in the sustainable management of forest resources and investments.


He said streamlining land and carbon rights were also important since they played a critical role in ensuring equitable resource access rights and benefit sharing.


Naa Puowele Karbo III, Lawra Naa, said traditional land ownership was not well developed and documented especially in northern Ghana.


He called for the need to harmonise the customary land administration and statutory law ownership and use.


Naa Karbo said the northern part of the country was environmentally fragile therefore measures should be put in place to check the annual ritual of bush burning and emerging mineral rights.


Source: GNA Story (
Published: 2011-08-05 00:30:43
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