Subregional Workshop – Ownership and Access Rights in Decentralized Natural Resources Management in the Sahel

RRI” Intercooperation and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) organized a workshop on ownership and access rights in the Sahel” focusing on local rights in the context of decentralized natural resource management. Held in Bamako” Mali on October 13-16″ the discussions advanced the regional debate on recognizing communities’ forest and agro-forest resource rights. 

The key messages shared at the opening ceremony of the workshop included:

•    Community land ownership rights are a priority and it should be reinforced throughout the whole Sahel

•    Decentralization should be an opportunity for good governance” equity” and poverty alleviation

•    The decentralization process in Mali needs to be improved and consolidated

Sub-regional recommendations were formulated for decentralized natural resources management inclusive of communities’ ownership and access rights through Local Conventions” gender equity” and transfer of power.

Local conventions

•    Include Local Conventions in norms and legislative policies

•    Encourage the definition of indicators and sharing of methodological approaches

•    Define monitoring and evaluation mechanisms

•    Give responsibilities to communities and Local Collectivities in drafting the rules

Gender equity

•    Ensure the inclusion of gender equity in natural resources management laws and policies

•    Reinforce women’s economic power through income generating activities and micro credit

•    Strive for a strong participation and representation of women in decision making

Transfer of power

•    Harmonize the perceptions regarding the new concepts related to transfer of power

•    Implement decentralization laws

•    Reinforce the capacities of Local Collectivities and local partners

•    “capitalize” the experiences in transfer of power

Actions plans were drafted for Mali” Burkina Faso and Niger with recommendations for regional participation in effective transfer of power in land and forest resources management.

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