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12.02.2014 General News

Eastern Regional chiefs briefed on land administration

By A. Kofoya Tetteh / Daily Graphic / Ghana
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Eleven paramount chiefs and queens drawn from the Eastern Region have attended a day's seminar on land administration in Koforidua.

The seminar was organised by the Land Administrative Project (LAP) to enable the traditional rulers, who were custodians of the land, to play their expected roles in proper land administration.

Addressing Nananom, the Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Madam Barbara Serwaa Asamoah, who spoke on behalf of the Minister, Alhaji Inusah Fuseini, said Ghanaians, especially traditional rulers, custodians of the land, had to work collectively on proper land management.

That, according to the minister, would determine the pace of the country's socio-economic development. Judicial Service

She announced that the Judicial Service had been allocated $2.56 million to among others, expand specialised land courts and provide the needed equipment, build the capacity of judges and staff as well as provide the needed equipment.

 He added that under LAP-2, the Judicial Service would also be promoting the use of court-connected Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) with the active involvement of traditional rulers, adding that $3.86 million had also been provided for the Accra Metropolitan Assembly for the project.

The minister, who was not happy that for a long time land administration services had been concentrated in the regional capitals, and out of the reach of the ordinary citizens, stated that such a challenge was being addressed by bringing services to the doorsteps of the people, especially chiefs, queens and women who formed over 50 per cent of the population but produced over 60 per cent of the country's food and cash crops. Better Ghana agenda 

The government, the minister indicated, had demonstrated a strong commitment through LAP-2 towards the eradication of ethnic, gender and geographic inequalities in the country, thus giving full meaning to the “Better Ghana Agenda” espoused by the Mahama Administration.

 Alhaji Inusa Fuseini, who told the gathering that other sensitisation and outreach programmes had been planned for towns and villages in their traditional areas, called on nananom for support for the success of the programmes. Foundation for reforms

The Deputy Eastern Regional Minister, Ms Mavis Ama Frempong, who also read the speech of the Regional Minister, Mrs Helen Adjoa Ntoso, said LAP-1, which covered 2003-2010 laid the foundation for the country's land reform efforts in many aspects such as customary boundary demarcation.

She said the government was therefore, through the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, implementing LAP-2 which was to mainstream gender equity with funding through its development partners, including the World Bank, and called for support from nananom.  Land administration

Prudent land administration has for a long period been associated with a number of challenges in the country, especially in the Eastern Region and to address the challenges, the government of the National Democratic Congress, in 1999, launched the Ghana Land Policy with a long-term goal to improve land administration in the country.

The policy with a framework under Land Administrative Project One (LAP-1), made provisions for the institutional development of chieftaincy, leading to the establishment of 37 customary land secretariats and the demarcation of some traditional boundaries in some parts of the country. LAP-2

The successful implementation of LAP-1 made it necessary for the taking off of LAP-2, aimed at consolidating the gains so far made in land administration.

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