9 February 2018

East African Ministers Endorse Cooperation to Advance the AU Land Agenda

Ministers in charge of environment and natural resources management in East Africa have endorsed a cooperation partnership between the East African Community (EAC) Secretariat and ECA's African Land Policy Centre to develop capacity of EAC in implementing the AU Declaration on Land.

"I would like to laud the efforts of senior officials, Permanent Secretaries and Ministers who have worked hard this week, culminating in key decisions to advance regional cooperation among our Partner States on key sectors that promote economic development and natural resource management" noted Sam Mangusho Cheptories, Minister of Water and Environment, Republic of Uganda, Chairing the Ministerial Segment of the 5th Meeting of the Sectoral Council on Environment and Natural Resources Management.

Ms. Joan Kagwanja, coordinator of ALPC lauded the Ministers' endorsement of the EAC/ ALPC partnership, noting " this is a ground making moment for the region as the partnership will launch a project on capacity building of EAC to Implement the AU declaration on land issues and challenges in Africa, beginning with platforms for exchanging knowledge, sharing experiences and best practices to advance land policy formulation, implementation and monitoring in accordance with the AU Declaration on Land."

Christophe Bazivamo, Deputy Secretary General, Productive and Social Sectors, EAC, extolled the commitment of Partner States, which led to the endorsement of key decisions in advancement of regional cooperation in the East Africa.

For his part, Mr. Jean Baptiste Havugimana, Director for Productive Sectors, East African Community, welcomed the endorsement of the EAC/ALPC partnership noting that the project is urgently needed to build capacity of EAC Secretariat staff in order to generate knowledge and prepare compendia of best practices in several areas of land policy development and implementation. "The project will receive oversight and guidance from a project steering committee, comprised of senior officials from the EAC partner states in order to ensure that findings of research are used to improve the situation on the ground."

The Meeting at the 5th Sectoral Council on Environment and Natural Resources Management was held on 5-9 February, 2018, and was attended by over seventy (70) participants from East African Community member States which include Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda.

The African Land Policy Center (ALPC) is a secretariat of the tripartite consortium consisting of African Union Commission (AUC), the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), and the African Development Bank (AfDB) charged with coordinating the implementation of the AU declaration on land Issues and Challenges in Africa.

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