On 8 and 9 April 2014, over 40 participants attended the Land Stakeholders' Workshop in Kampala, Uganda. The Workshop launched the GLTN's country level engagement in Uganda. In her keynote address, the Minister of State for Lands, the Hon. Idah Nantaba, emphasized the importance of GLTN's work in developing land tools to facilitate decision-making in the areas of land rights, recording and registration, land use planning, land administration and management, law enforcement, valuation assessments, and the improvement of land administration efficiency.
The Workshop brought together a range of participants from Government, IFAD-supported projects, civil society, bilateral and multilateral organizations and academia and research institutions involved in the land sector.
One of the key points highlighted by Ambassador Rosemary Ssemafumu Mukasa, the Deputy Permanent Representative of UN-Habitat to the Committee of Permanent Representatives (CPR), was the fact that GLTN Phase II focuses on country level engagement. The Ambassador reiterated that the importance of normative work at the international level cannot be over emphasized, but that it will remain abstract unless it is brought down to the national and local arenas where the battle for security of tenure and for equitable, sustainable and optimal use of land resources is won. The Ambassador also remarked that GLTN must scale up good practices and act on lessons learned. Only then will the tools devised be truly effective in responding to the urge for more secure tenure for the poor and disadvantaged.
Participants discussed several thematic areas including Land Policy and Implementation, Urban Development, Land Information and Rural Development (including issues of Customary Tenure). Discussions were convened on existing programs and initiatives in Uganda. Some of the key issues identified in the group discussions included the need for the creation of a platform for stakeholder dialogue, information sharing and partnerships, support to knowledge management and awareness building, mapping out who is doing what and where (including the identification of gaps), consolidating existing research, sharing of information and initiatives on land, support to institutional and donor coordination and support to National Land Policy Implementation.
In addition, further legal and action research activities (e.g. customary lands, tenure security in urban areas, good practices), support to capacity assessment and capacity development initiatives were also identified as priority areas for interventions at the country level. Participants developed a draft action plan for country level engagement in Uganda, which focuses on strategic entry points, priority areas for engagement and partnership and institutional arrangements.