Entebbe — The Land Policy Initiative (LPI) organizes on 4 and 5 February 2015, in Entebbe, Uganda, an Experts' Group Meeting (EGM) to revise and validate the draft Gender Strategy of the organization. The LPI has developed the draft gender strategy as a guide to mainstreaming gender in the land policy development and implementation processes in Africa.
The main objective of the meeting is to review and provide inputs to the LPI Gender Strategy, with a view to validating information, data, and evidence presented in the document. The meeting is expected to identify and prioritize key follow up actions, and roles that the LPI, its partners, and other stakeholders can play in ensuring that gender considerations are mainstreamed in land policy process in across the continent.
"Today, in many African rural communities, women still do not have access to, and control of land needed for production. They benefit less from economic opportunities than men, because they are not land owners," noted in her opening remarks Ms Sarah Kulata-Basangwa, acting Director of Land Management, representing the Ministry of Lands, Housing, and Urban Development of Uganda. She highlighted the need for Africa to close the gender gaps, in order to achieve significant productivity gains. Ms Kulata-Basangwa further noted the need for gender responsive public awareness initiatives, and the importance of developing land policy action plans with gender inclusive monitoring and evaluation indicators.
Ms Joan Kagwanja, Chief of the LPI, noted that the EGM happens at the heels of the declaration by the African Union of 2015 as the "Year of Women Empowerment and Development towards Agenda 2063."
"We start our contribution to the AU year of women's empowerment by providing an avenue to address the challenges of women's access to, and control of land as an entry points to achieving the goals of the Agenda 2063," added Ms Kagwanja.
Main recommendations provided by the EGM will contribute to the finalization of the strategy by the LPI. The workshop brings together about 20 experts on gender and land, representing various institutions and organizations partnering with the LPI.
The Land Policy Initiative is a joint programme of the tripartite consortium consisting of the African Union Commission (AUC), the African Development Bank (AfDB), and United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA). Its mandate is to facilitate the implementation of the AU Declaration on Land Issues and Challenges in Africa.