Member news: Solidaridad Hosts National Learning Event

On the 26th of February 2019, Solidaridad organised a National Learning and Exchange Workshop on Practical Applications of the Provisions of the National Land Policy in the Context of Agricultural Investments in Sierra Leone at the Golden Tulip Hotel.
The main theme for the event was ‘’Implementation of the National Land Policy in the context of Responsible Agricultural Investments’’.

 

The event was divided into three segments. The first segment of the workshop contained welcome remarks and opening statements from various speakers within the Public sector including Hon Dr. Denis M Sandy(Minster of Lands, Housing and Environment), Hon. Anthony Y. Brewah (Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Representatives’ from DFID and Country Representative of Solidaridad Nicolas Jengre.

The second segment was dedicated to the LEGEND project. In 2016, Solidaridad lunched the Land Enhancing Governance for Economic Development (LEGEND) project in Sierra Leone with the objective to facilitate enabling policies on Land Governance by ensuring that the land acquisition procedures of large scale agricultural investor Natural Habitats (NH) meet the national and international best practices.

The impact of the LEGEND project has been significant and it has created awareness on land governance issues across seven chiefdoms. Presentations was done by Solidaridad, Natural Habitat and Namati, this was followed by moderated questions. Community stakeholders also shared their experiences about the Legend project and its impact in settling land disputes and promoting responsible agricultural development in their various communities.

The third segment of the workshop highlighted the experiences of private investor companies such as Sierra Tropical, Gold Tree Holdings, SocFin Agricultural Co.; Lizard Earth.

A new Agricultural Investment Approval Process (AIAP) for Sierra Leone was also presented by Victor Bangura from the Sierra Leone Investment and Export Promotion Agency (SLIEPA). Breakout groups were then formed for thematic discussions followed by feedbacks.

In summary, the event created an atmosphere where lessons learnt from the program could be discussed among stakeholders and in turn possible actions to infuse learning experiences into practical applications.

 

By Memuna Bayoh