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Customary Land Right Guidelines Coming   
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COLANDEF, a non-governmental organization (NGO), with funding and support from Omidyar Network, a United States of America (USA)-based philanthropic organization, has begun the process of implementing customary land rights documentation for land owners in the country.

The project is aimed at building the capacities of customary land authorities to enable them preside over the recordation and documentation of customary land rights.

Speaking at a stakeholder’s workshop on the sidelines of convening policy actors on Omidyar Network, the Executive Director of Colandef, Mrs. Nana Ama Yirrah, said that a key output under this project was the provision of a handbook that would be developed to guide customary land authorities in documenting customary land rights.

She was of the view that the handbook was going to give land authorities a step-by-step guidance on how traditional authorities can document customary land rights for all the rightful owners of lands in the area.

Mrs. Yirrah explained that land documentation is done mostly in the urban areas hence the provision of the handbook to give them extensive knowledge about ownership of their lands.

She argued that traditional authorities need support in order to be able to do this documentation, hence the need to provide them with the handbook.

The executive director further asserted that the handbook would successfully make land rights documentation a part of the work they do as administrators of that very land.

According to her, Colandef is working with a number of stakeholders in Ghana, including the National House of Chiefs, queen mothers, the Lands Commission, the Office of the Administrator of Stool Lands, Customary Land Secretariats, community groups, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, among many others, to achieve the goal.

Mrs. Yirrah further indicated that through partnership with all these stakeholders, Colandef seeks to produce a handbook that adequately responds to the needs and interests of the different stakeholder groups and traditional areas, and further make the handbook applicable to their situation as actors in the customary land sector.

Partner of Omidyar Network in charge of property rights, Mr. Peter Rabley, noted that Omidyar Network, as a philanthropic organization, seeks to invest in initiatives in various sectors including land and property rights.

According to him, in Ghana, Omidyar Network has established funding partnerships with Colandef, Meridia and Micro Aerial projects.

He however indicated that each of the three partners is implementing a unique initiative towards contributing to enhancing land security tenure and land rights protection in Ghana’s land sector.

According to Mr. Peter Rabley, Merida is focused on delivering tailored documentation services to various categories of land right holders and users in the country.

Explaining the initiatives of Micro Aerial projects, he stated that it would provide optimal, cost effective and intelligent solutions for surveying, mapping and modeling needs.
Source: Daily Guide

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