News in 2020

“Winning the fight against Corruption in the Land Sector: Sustainable Pathway for Africa’s Transformation”

25 - 29 November 2019, Abidjan, Ivory Coast 

Vice President Diane Dumashie attends the United Nations Conference on Land Policy in Africa, CLPA-2019

FIG Vice President Diane Dumashie attended the 3rd African Union Land Commission conference held in Abidjan, Ivory Coast 25th to 29th November 2019. In parallel to the conference, GLTN launched the GLTN Gender Strategy at which Vice President Diane Dumashie delivered a welcome message.

Middle left VP Diane Dumashie, Middle right Oumar Sylla (Head of GLTN

The 3rd Conference on Land Policy in Africa is a joint initiative of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, the African Development Bank and the African Union.  Organised by the African Land Policy Centre (ALPC, based in the African Union Commission) the conference supports the Declaration of 2018 by the African Union as the Anti-Corruption Year under the theme “Winning the Fight against Corruption: A Sustainable Path to Africa’s Transformation”. 

Joan Kagwanja, Coordinator of the ALPC, explained that this theme is particularly relevant now because 2019 marks the 10-year benchmark of the decade of the AU declaration on land.  The Declaration commits member states to review their land sectors and to develop comprehensive policies that take into account their peculiar needs; as well as build adequate human financial, technical capacities to support land policy development and implementation.

AU 2019 Emminet persons

The official conference opening ceremony provided pertinent reminders and highlighted the importance of land governance.  The opening statement from Stephen Karingi (Director of the Region­al Integration, Infrastructure and Trade Division at the Economic Commission for Africa), “Success in achieving the sustainable development goals is underpinned by good land governance, as it contributes to a range of development objectives.”  Echoed by Her Excellency Ambassador Josefa L.C. Sacko (Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture, African Union Commission) highlighted the relevance of land governance to respond to the global environmental challenges as well as sustainably managing what appears to be a continuous demand for land for different land uses. 

The key note address given by the  African Development Bank’s Senior Vice President, Charles Boamah, noted how critical
sound land policies are to economic growth, food security, and pov­erty alleviation across the continent combined with tenure security and protection of land rights, which can in turn enhance investment opportunities in land,” pertinently adding that land administration systems in many countries on the continent were characterised by poor infrastructure and management practices largely because of corruption. 


Dr. Benjamin Laag (Head of Cooperation of the German Embassy In Côte d’Ivoire) in his opening statement
"Talking about land and corruption is no longer a taboo. Addressing land corruption is an important but sensitive topic and this conference will be a valuable contribution to this conversation."      

The Opening, 4 minute Youtube video here:


AU 2019 Conference Plenary session

The conference is becoming established as a policy and learning event whose goal is to deepen capacity for land policy in Africa through improved access to knowledge and information on land policy development and implementation.   The format of the Conference included masterclasses, plenary and parallel sessions, side events, exhibitions, and the use of social media to reach a broader audience.  The opening addresses set the scene for open dialogue and frank discussions around the conference theme. In particular each day, the plenaries set the tone for subsequent deliberations during the day, including:

  • Strengthening Institutions and Financing Land Governance in Africa
  • Women Tenure Security for inclusive Growth and Sustainable Agricultural Transformation
  • Investment, Corruption and Land Governance
  • Land, Ethnicity and Conflict

Recognising that not only one actor has all the answers, a range of stakeholders were well represented in the deliberations, including a platform of traditional leaders from across the African Continent, bringing unique perspectives to the discussions with policymakers, professionals, academics and civil society actors.

Customary leader’s involvement during day three, discussion on ‘Investment, Corruption and Land Governance’.

It was welcoming to share the deliberations with new as well as existing FIG members and FIG partners.  In our immediate FIG family people included Angela and Eugene Etuonovbe (respectively past Commission 4 Chair and Lawyer), Mansur Muhamad (SURCON, Chief registrar of Nigeria), three Nigerian Surveyor State Generals, Yacouba Hamead (Ivory Coast, FGF member and former ARN LOC- 2016) and Josaam Potel (INNES Rwanda, former ARN LOC-2017)- noting INNES upcoming Earth Observation conference- October 2020) .


Kabir Mansur Muhammad (centre/ fifth from right), Angela Etuonovbe (far right)

In addition meeting with FIG partners to dialogue and network, including, Janet Edeme (AU), Victoria Stanley (World Bank), to name but a few and finally carrying the flag for our sister organisations including Commonwealth Association of Surveyors and Land Economist (CASLE) and the UN, Habitat Professionals Forum (HPF).

And a huge thank you to Land Portal who were the media partner of the 2019 Conference on Land Policy (CLPA), providing exceptionally good daily bulletins that each summed up the previous days deliberations – all four AU Bulletins, courtesy of Land Portal may be found here:

And, at the AU web site, daily report highlights may be found here:

The conference provides opportunities for partners and stakeholders to gather for complimentary side events, such as that organised by GLTN (UN Habitat).

Here GLTN Gender strategy Launch

FIG Vice President Diane Dumashie was pleased to attend and support the launch of the GLTN Gender Strategy (2019- 2030); Towards Securing Women’s and Girl’s Land and Property Rights.  FIG VP D Dumashie’s key note may be found here [Link] The reception brought together GLTN members, partners/donors and other actors to meet and interact and endorse the content and aspirations of the newly developed GLTN Gender Strategy, that importantly forms a central thread in the overall GLTN Strategy for 2018- 2030. 

The Gender strategy focuses on securing women’s and girls’ land tenure, land-related resources and property rights, including housing in rural, peri-urban and urban contexts.  It has four core gender responsive objectives including: delivering outcome on based commitments, increase the use and institutionalise land tools; increase secured land tenure and property rights; strengthen knowledge and capacities

Moderated by Everlyne Nairesiae (GLTN Gender Lead), a panel provided brief reflections/observations:

  • Oumar Sylla, GLTN Secretariat,  – welcome remarks and introduction to GLTN
  • Diane Dumashie, International Federation of Surveyors  –  exploring challenges and opportunities for mainstreaming gender in land administration
  • Naome Kabanda- Commissioner Land Administration, Uganda – reflection on the Gender Strategy for National Land Policy implementation in Uganda
  • Mino Ramaroson, Huairou Commission – Presentation of the GLTN Gender Strategy
  • Husna Mbarak, FAO – observation on the GLTN Gender Strategy and link to VGGT
  • Peter Sidler,  EDA SEZ Representative of the Global Donor Working Group on Land – reflection on donors attention to gender issues  in the land sector ; partnership and resources

You can access/download the new GLTN Gender Strategy here:


Dr Diane Dumashie FRICS, Vice President FIG
February 2020