Strengthening Customary Justice Systems

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The Legal Empowerment Movement and Its Implications

Peter Chapman,

Around the world, a global legal empowerment movement is transforming the way in which people access justice. The concept of legal empowerment is rooted in strengthening the ability of communities to: “understand, use and shape the law.” The movement relies on people helping one another to stand up to authority and challenge injustice. At its…

Justice for All: The report of the Task Force on Justice

The Pathfinders Task Force on Justice,

At the heart of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development lies a vision of a “just, equitable, tolerant, open and socially inclusive world in which the needs of the most vulnerable are met.” Justice is a thread that runs through all 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Without increased justice, the world will not be able…

Access to What? Legal Agency and Access to Justice for Indigenous Peoples in Latin America

Daniel M. Brinks,

This resource is from the The Journal of Development Studies, 2019 Vol. 55, No. 3, 348–365. In this paper I issue a call for a primary focus on expanding and strengthening alternative, community-based justice systems, as a strategy for securing the full benefits of legal agency to indigenous and other culturally distinct groups. I do so…

Wapichan Environmental Monitoring Report

South Rupununi District Council,

This report presents an overview of the South Rupununi District Council (SRDC) Monitoring Programme and provides a case study of one particular site that the Monitoring Programme has been targeting – Marudi Mountain. The report begins with background information regarding the Monitoring Programme and how it operates. It continues by providing a summary of the…

Community Land Protection Facilitators Guide (French)

Rachael Knight, Marena Brinkhurst, Jaron Vogelsang, and Namati's Community Land Protection partner organizations,

This resource, Guide des Facilitateurs de la Protection des Terres Communautaires, is the French version of the Community Land Protection Facilitator’s Guide. The English version can be found here. Namati’s Community Land Protection Facilitators Guide is a step-by-step, practical “how to” manual for grassroots advocates working to help communities protect their customary claims and rights to…

The Scramble for Land Rights: Reducing Inequity between Communities and Companies

Laura Notess, Peter G. Veit, Iliana Monterroso, Andiko, Emmanuel Sulle, Anne M. Larson, Anne-Sophie Gindroz, Julia Quaedvlieg, Andrew Williams,

Indigenous and community lands, crucial for rural livelihoods, are typically held under informal customary arrangements. This can leave the land vulnerable to outside commercial interests, so communities may seek to formalize their land rights in a government registry and obtain an official land document. But this process is time-consuming and complex, and in contrast, companies…

Breaking the Silence on Gender-Based Violence in Zimbabwe: A Case Documentation on the UN Women Supported Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) and Gender-Based Violence (GBV) Project

Justice for Children (JCT), Women and Law in Southern Africa (WLSA) , Zimbabwe Women Lawyers Association (ZWLA),

Justice for Children (JCT) in conjunction with Women and Law in Southern Africa (WLSA) and Zimbabwe Women Lawyers Association (ZWLA) signed an agreement with UN Women to implement joint gender-based violence (GBV) project in three districts: Bindura in Mashonaland Central Province, Makoni in Manicaland Province and Beitbridge in Matabeleland South Province. In response to the…

Customary Transfers and Land Sales in Cote d’Ivoire: Revisiting the Embeddedness Issue

Jean-Pierre Chauveau, Jean-Philippe Colin,

The article offers an empirical perspective regarding customary land sales in Côte d’Ivoire, focusing on their socio-political embeddedness as well as on the implications of such processes for the content of the rights and duties transferred. Two interlinked aspects of land transfers, which usually come together in African contexts, are to be taken into account:…

The Challenge of Food Security: ‘Land Grabbing’

Lorenzo Cotula,

“Land Grabbing’ is a chapter from the book, The Challenge of Food Security (Edward Elgar 2012), which provides an analysis of national and international law, calls for more robust legal safeguards, and for efforts to strengthen local capacity to exercise rights.

Chapter: The Art of Good Facilitation

Namati,

A chapter from the Guide that describes why good facilitation is key to the success of community land protection efforts and provides practical tips on how to improve facilitation skills.

Bringing Law to Life: Paralegal Interventions in Natural Resource Exploitation

Posted by Sonkita Conteh in Community Paralegals, Land & Natural Resources

Introduction When a diamond mining company closed its operations in Mofuwe Village, in the south of Sierra Leone, it left behind three mined-out pits the size of several football pitches, a collapsed bridge, a blocked stream and an uncompleted community school building. It was as if the villagers woke up one morning and the company…

New book on protecting community lands and resources in Africa from Namati and Natural Justice

Posted by Marena Brinkhurst in Advocacy & Systemic Change, Land & Natural Resources, Resources & Research

In 2013, a group of 20 expert advocates from across Africa gathered for a three-day symposium to share experiences and practical strategies for effectively supporting communities to protect their lands and natural resources. The symposium illuminated many similarities between the types of threats to communities’ land and natural resource claims, as well as underlying factors that drive and exacerbate…