In recent years in Tanzania, there has been an increasing number of conflicts between farmers and pastoralists, many turning violent. In Kiteto district alone between 2013 and 2015, more than 34 people were killed as a result of such conflicts. With increasing competition for land—in the absence of steps to secure the rights of those with entitlements to land and resources—the situation is likely to deteriorate. With insecure access to grazing lands, a lack of land use planning and continued encroachment of grazing areas by crop farmers and investors alike, pastoralists are often pushed from place to place with no real solution provided to their plight.
In this context the Sustainable Rangeland Management Project (SRMP), led by the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries and the National Land Use Planning Commission with financial support from IFAD, Irish Aid, the International Land Coalition (ILC), the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) and the Government of Tanzania aims to secure rangelands and the land rights of local rangeland users including pastoralists across the country through the implementation of village land use planning and land certification in collaboration with national and local authorities.. Launched in 2010 in Kiteto district, Manyara region the Project not only supports individual village land use planning, but more importantly joint village land use planning (JVLUP) in order to secure resources such as grazing areas shared across village boundaries. Facilitated by supporting policy and legislation the Project piloted JVLUP in three villages. The grazing areas shared by the three villages is called OLENGAPA to incorporate a part of each village’s name
In the OLENGAPA area the SRMP supported the villagers to carry out a participatory mapping of the different resources in the villages and their distribution, an innovative approach in the village land use planning process. This was used to develop a basemap, including showing which resources are shared by the villages and where they are situated.
SRMP then facilitated village members to come to agreement over the individual village land use maps and plans, as well as the joint village land use map and plan, and the joint village land use agreement (JVLUA). These detailed and ultimately protected the shared grazing area, water points, livestock routes and other shared resources. Reaching agreement was a protracted negotiation process between the villages and within villages between different interest groups, involving many community meetings and much investment of resources. In the end each Village Assembly approved the JVLUA, which allocated 20,706.73 ha of land for shared grazing – that is, around 40 per cent of the total area of the three villages. By-laws for the management of the resources were developed and adopted.
Following on from the approval of the JVLUA, the OLENGAPA Village Councils established a Joint Grazing Land Committee made up of members from all three villages. This Committee is responsible for planning, management, enforcement of by-laws applicable to the OLENGAPA, and coordination of the implementation of the OLENGAPA land use agreements and joint land use plan. In addition a Livestock Keepers Association was established including 53 founding members with most households from the three villages being associate members. In January 2016 the Ministry of Lands approved and registered the village land boundary maps and deed plans for the three villages. The District Council has issued the village land certificates and the next step is for the Village Councils to begin issuing Certificates of Customary Rights of Occupancy (CCROs). The shared grazing area will require three group CCROs to be issued to the Livestock Keepers Association – one from each village for the part of the grazing area that falls under its jurisdiction. Signboards and beacons marking the boundary of the shared grazing area are being put in place.
Result achieved: Between 2010 and 2015, the Sustainable Rangeland Management Project (SRMP) assisted nine villages to carry out VLUP, and successfully piloted the implementation of joint village planning across three of these, leading to the protection through certification of a shared grazing areaa and provision of group CCROs (certificates of customary rights of occupancy). The solution contributed to improving the management of the areas by the established Livestock Keepers Associations and resolving conflicts between land users.
Since 2016 SRMP has been focusing on the scaling-up of the joint VLUP approach in several new clusters of villages, as well as expanding the original ones.
Partners: IFAD, Irish Aid, The International Land Coalition (ILC), International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), the Government of Tanzania and local CSOs.
Budget: US$546, 972
Sustainable Rangeland Management Project
Ms.Fiona Flintan, Senior Scientist ILRI and Technical Adviser for the ILC Rangelands Initiative (global component)