The Land Commission and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) are conducting a 3-day awareness workshop on responsible governance of tenure of land, fisheries and forests in the context of national food security.
Speaking at the official opening of the workshop on Tuesday, June 17, at the S. Trowen Nagbe United Methodist Church, the FAO Country Director to Liberia, Jean-Alexandre Scaglia, said this is the beginning of tangible national and international efforts on the voluntary guidelines on the governance of tenure of land, fishery and forests for the country.
Mr. Scaglia said the mission is to promote responsible governance of tenure of land, fisheries and forests with emphasis on all tenure of private, public communal, indigenous, customary and informal land.
Mr. Scaglia said, the goals of the guidelines are to achieve food security for all and support the progressive realization of the right to adequate food in the context of national food security in Liberia.
“This is the effort towards the eradication of hunger and poverty, and also intended to contribute to achieving sustainable livelihoods, social stability, housing security, rural development, environmental protection and sustainable social and economic development for the people.”
According to the FAO Country Representative, the guidelines cover three key areas that are crucial for the attainment of food security, rural development and social and economic development as well as cross cutting issues.
Mr. Scaglia said, Liberia stands to attract more investments in agriculture, fishery and forestry if farmers, community people, and ordinary citizens are supported in getting not only access but also right to land, and fishery and forestry they need.
The three areas includes land, that allow families and other citizens to produce food for consumption and increase income through the sale of produce from their farms, fisheries, the secure the livelihoods of millions of people who depend on marine and inland fisheries, and forestry, that improved governance such as effective law enforcement, reduced corruption, and greater transparency to promote sustainable forest management.
Also speaking at the workshop, Dr. C. Othello Brandy, Chairman, Land Commission, said this was an opportunity for people of national concern to discuss the way forward of food and security to Liberia.
“We hope that the results of the workshop will have the practical measures put into place to increase the issue of access to land by women and men including children both in the rural and urban areas in the country,” Chairman Brandy hoped.
Dr. Brandy said the issue of funding was one of the problems, stating that there is a need for government to create the necessary condition that will empower farmers in their production.
The program brought together over 100 persons, including members of civil society organizations, staffs of Land Commission, FAO representatives other government officials.