Strengthening Citizen and Civil Society Representatives in Land Governance Mechanisms

The November 2020 election showed that once again Myanmar citizens continue to support a transition to a federal democratic political system despite the threat of the Covid-19 pandemic. The awareness that citizens have of their role in deepening democracy and state-building is not limited to voting in elections. As more citizens understand and exercise their legal rights, they have become increasingly involved in land governance mechanisms as citizens, farmers, and CSO representatives. Namati and a coalition of non-­governmental and civil society representatives have gathered constructive feedback for areas that require attention, to improve the functioning of the system specifically regarding the participation of non-governmental representatives in land management and governance systems. This brief summarizes findings from the survey and discussions with 33 citizens/ farmers/civil society representatives actively working or involved in the land sector, who sit on various land governance bodies. We hope it will be useful in strengthening government action towards land management reform and in the process of drafting national land law with greater collaboration and participation of farmer/citizen/civil society representatives.