Originally appeared on Agrilinks.
Anchored in the African Union Declaration on Land Issues and Challenges in Africa — which was endorsed by the AU Summit in 2009 — African heads of state and government resolved to take ownership of and lead the land reform agenda by strengthening land governance institutions, thus establishing the African Land Policy Centre (ALPC) in 2017 at the continental level.
The Declaration urges member states to use the Framework and Guidelines on Land Policy in Africa (F&G) to review their land sectors with a view to improving land governance and management. To this end, the ALPC generates and sustains political and public will to ensure land remains a priority on the continental development agenda, facilitates knowledge generation to inform evidence-based policies and programming, and strengthens capacity at continental, regional and country levels. Owing to its exclusive African Union mandate and strategic position as the joint secretariat of the tripartite institutions of the African Union, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa and the African Development Bank, on matters pertaining to land governance, the ALPC is well positioned to lead in setting the land agenda for the continent, influence land governance in member states and respond to stakeholder’s needs, with support of, and working in partnership with, others.
Agriculture is integral to ALPC’s mandate and is one of its six thematic priorities. As most Africans primarily rely on agriculture and natural resource-based sectors for their livelihood, wellbeing and employment, effective land governance and management is indispensable to any efforts to alleviate poverty and spur inclusive economic growth. Addressing tenure insecurity is particularly important if women and other vulnerable groups are to access resources and benefit equally according to their different needs. ALPC works in partnership with the African Union Commission and the New Partnership for Africa’s Developmet (NEPAD) to mainstream land governance in national agricultural investment plans in order to ensure land governance issues that impede agricultural transformation are well articulated, funded and addressed.