Liberia’s first-ever Land Rights Policy concerns four land rights categories (Public Land, Government Land, Customary Land, and Private Land), and a cross-cutting sub-category called Protected Areas, which must be conserved for the benefit of all Liberians. For Public Land and Government Land, the Policy sets forth critical policy recommendations regarding: how the Government transfers such land, and how the Government acquires land, especially through the exercise of eminent domain (i.e. forced acquisition). With respect to the new category of Customary Land, there are several significant recommendations: Customary Land and Private Land are equally protected; and communities will self-define, be issued a deed, establish a legal entity, and strengthen their governance arrangements to make them fully representative and accountable. The Government also undertakes to support communities in implementing these recommendations. Finally, several Private Land issues are detailed, which include loss of ownership, leases, easements, and adverse possession.
May 23, 2013