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Large Scale Land Acquisitions for Investment in Kenya: Is the participation, and benefits of affected local communities meaningful, and equitable? A case study of the situation in Lamu, Isiolo and Siaya Counties.
Robert Kibugi1, Mwenda Makathimo3, Ibrahim Mwathane2
1University of Nairobi, Kenya; 2Land Development and Governance Institute; 3Land Development and Governance Institute
Land acquisitions, either driven by foreign investments or domestic investment needs have continued to polarize opinions. When this research was proposed, it was premised on arguments by scholars Ruth Meinzen-Dick and Helen Markelova, who had analysed agricultural land deals, and argued that there were potentially two schools of thought about foreign acquisitions over agricultural land. Their school of thought regards them as “beneficial investments” whereby investors are viewed as bringing needed investment, possibly improved technology or farming knowledge, thereby generating employment and increasing food production. Meinzen-Dick and Markelova further argued that because these land acquisitions, foreign and domestic, are ongoing at a very fast rate, it is necessary for host countries to focus on what they can do to seize the opportunities and mitigate the risks associated with the deals. Thus, a national conversation is necessary to debate the crucial question of how to provide safeguards to protect the interests of local communities directly affected by these investments, including compensation of land that is taken, and their place in the socio-economic and environmental continuum of investment projects from design to implementation.
Combating poverty. Cluster farming initiatives in Nigeria
Andrew Smith1, His Excellency Ibrahi Hadejia Dep Gov Jigawa State2
1Adam Smith International, Nigeria; 2Government of Jigawa State
Agriculture is central to the economy of Jigawa State in Nigeria. The cumulative impacts of poverty, environmental degradation and increasing population has resulted in decreased efficiency and reduced yield. Increasingly the state has, along with neighbouring states in northern Nigeria, become vulnerable to increasing levels of hunger and malnutrition amongst the rural poor. The state has reacted by developing a system of local ‘cluster farm’ initiatives in all 284 local wards to address the problem and to educate and encourage farmers to adopt an increasingly commercial ‘for profit’ approach to production of staple crops suited to the local environment. These crops are rice, ground nut, soya bean and sesame.
Land status of agricultural concessions in Kinshasa (D. R. Congo): Legal framework limitations to Production Incentive.
1Economics and Rural Development Unit , University of Liege, Belgium; 2Agricultural Economics Department, University of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo; 3Faculty of Law, Unversity of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo
The results of this analysis highlights that since the enactment of the 1973 Land Act, access to agricultural land in this region rarely comply with legal procedure; most land occupants rather transact with various individuals who have customary rights over lands (traditional chiefs) instead meeting the competent services. As a matter of fact, from a legal standpoint, most of the occupants limit themselves to awarding a provisional occupancy contract, which is just a preparatory step to agricultural concession, the issuance of which appears to be less complicate as per common practice in the constituency. The fact that land owners limit themselves at the stage of the provisional contract, usually far beyond the officially prescribed deadline, without even launching the application for the concession contract justifies the lack and poor level of development of occupied lands. Meanwhile, the value of these lands increases. The great trust gained by owners from the land administration and the payment of customary rights enables him/her to keep the funds in serenity and to receive yearly appreciation without an actual agricultural production. Thus, lands status obtained on the basis of this double recognition ensures an apparent land tenure security but does not promote agricultural production.