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W. ODAME LARBI PROJECT DIRECTOR LAND ADMINISTRATION PROJECT GHANA: EQUITY IMPLICATIONS OF LAND CERTIFICATION.

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Presentation on theme: "W. ODAME LARBI PROJECT DIRECTOR LAND ADMINISTRATION PROJECT GHANA: EQUITY IMPLICATIONS OF LAND CERTIFICATION."— Presentation transcript:

1 W. ODAME LARBI PROJECT DIRECTOR LAND ADMINISTRATION PROJECT GHANA: EQUITY IMPLICATIONS OF LAND CERTIFICATION

2 PRESENTATION OUTLINE Introduction Land rights and interests in Ghana and their characteristics The need for land certification The key equity issues in land certification Equity implications

3 GHANA AT A GLANCE Country Profile Size : 238,540 km 2 Population:23 million Population growth rate: 2.1% Urban population: 46.3% Urban population growth: 3.2% Economy: predominantly agricultural (37.3% of GDP; employ 60% of rural labour force) Land ownership pattern:  State – 20%  Customary – 78%  Split ownership – 2%

4 LAND RIGHTS AND INTERESTS IN GHANA AND THEIR CHARACTERISTICS Cardinal principle: there is no land without an owner Dominant form of land ownership is customary land which represents all the different categories of rights and interests held within traditional systems (stools, skins, clans, and families) The main customary rights in interests (in order of hierarchy)  Allodial interests - customary interest not subject to any restrictions on rights of user or obligations other than restrictions or obligations imposed by statute  Customary freeholds – the rights to land subject to only such restrictions or obligations as may be imposed upon a subject of a stool/skin/family who has taken possession of stool or family land either without consideration or upon payment of a nominal consideration  Share cropping where the proceeds of a farm are divided according to pre-determined arrangements

5 LAND RIGHTS AND INTERESTS IN GHANA AND THEIR CHARACTERISTICS  Share farming where the land rather than the proceeds are divided according to pre-determined arrangements  Alienation holdings – lands acquired outright by a non- member of the land owning community  Gifts  Other customary tenancy arrangements  Community’s common property rights – rights to secondary forest produce, water, common grazing grounds, etc.  A range of derived/secondary rights Customary rights and common law rights (freeholds and leaseholds) often co-exist in the same piece of land

6 LAND CERTIFICATION Two types of systems operate in Ghana:  Deed Registration  Title Registration Deed Registration The authoritative recording of instruments/transactions affecting land which provide prima facie evidence of rights and interests in the particular piece of land Title Registration  The authoritative adjudication and recording of the title to a piece of land  Registration is by reference to the land itself and not instruments affecting the land  Title is state guaranteed

7 TYPES OF CERTIFICATION Deed Registration  Operates in nine regions of the country  Through the LAP a Land Registry has been established in 8 regional capitals Title Registration  Operates in the Greater Accra Region and Kumasi (Awutu- Senya has just been declared a title registration district to pilot systematic rural titling under MiDA Project)

8 LAND CERTIFICATION - COVERAGE Deed Registration  Operates in nine regions of the country  Through the LAP a Land Registry has been established in 8 regional capitals Title Registration  Operates in the Greater Accra Region and Kumasi (Awutu- Senya has just been declared a title registration district to pilot systematic rural titling under MiDA Project)

9 DEED REGISTRATION- FEATURES It is not compulsory It is not systematic Even though it is not by reference to a plan (in the law) in practice the Lands Commission records the instruments by reference to a plan before registration Site plan must receive prior approval by the Regional Surveyor

10 TITLE REGISTRATION - FEATURES Even though the Law provides for a systematic approach to registration in practice it is sporadic Even though the Law provides for compulsory registration in practice it is demand driven. There is no sanction against default other than the state being registered as the proprietor. The history of property ownership does not support the implementation of the provision. Adjudication is at three levels  The Chief Registrar/registrars  The Land Title Adjudication Committee  The High Court Ensures quick and safe land transactions Assures security of tenure Preparing to pilot a systematic approach

11 THE NEED FOR CERTIFICATION Two Beneficiary Assessment of Land Registries established under the LAP concluded that the need for land registration stems from:  Increased demand for land  Increased commodification and commercialisation of land rights  Demand for documentation to determine root of title  Demand for documentation of land transfers  Security of tenure offered by land certification  Reduction in litigation  Reduction in turn-around time  Proximity to Land Registry  Access to credit

12 REGISTRATION OF LAND RIGHTS RegistryMalesFemalesJointCorporateTOTAL Accra (LTR) Sunyani Tamale Bolgatanga Wa Koforidua Sekondi Ho Cape Coast TOTAL

13 REGISTRATION OF LAND RIGHTS RegistryMalesFemalesJointCorporateTOTAL Accra (LTR) Sunyani Tamale Bolgatanga Wa Koforidua Sekondi Ho Cape Coast TOTAL

14 CUSTOMARY LAND SECRETARIATS Local land administration structures for the customary land owners  Integral part of the structures for customary land management  Assist the customary land owners to improve the management of their land  Accurate and up to date records keeping for the customary land owners  Local source of information about land ownership and land use to improve equity and reduce vulnerability  38 CLSs established throughout the country

15 SYSTEMATIC TITLE REGISTRATION Systematic surveying, inventory and systematic title registration of properties. This approach will capture in a comprehensive way the rights and interests existing in various parcels  application of the section by section, block by block, parcel by parcel and the one parcel - one visit principle to ensure that all relevant information required for the issuing of title are collected in an efficient, participatory and effective manner  Piloting in urban areas (target 50,000 properties) under LAP and in rural areas under MiDA  Use of modern technology (DPT) to improve efficiency and reduce cost  To be completed by end of 2009

16 KEY EQUITY ISSUES IN LAND CERTIFICATION The objective is to ensure that land certification does not lead to:  Loss of land rights  Diminution in the quantum of land rights But rather captures the defacto rights as accurately as is possible in terms of both spatial and attribute dimensions KEY AREAS TO WATCH Surveying and adjudication must be participatory Cost must be affordable Bureaucracy must be simple (processes and procedures) Special effort must be made to include the vulnerable

17 THE VULNERABLE IN LAND CERTIFICATION Increasing level of vulnerability Vulnerability increases in cases of no or improper documentation Allodial interest Freeholds (purchased lands) Leaseholds Customary freeholders in peri- urban areas Customary freeholders not close to the decision- makers Customary tenants Women in rural communities Third generation beneficiaries of customary gifts Communal rights Derived/Secondary rights

18 EQUITY ISSUES IN LAND CERTIFICATION The challenges  Customary system of land ownership requires careful analysis and understanding to be able to capture existing land rights, their quantum and caveats  Customary system does not lend itself to the rolling out of large scale certification programmes at the state level  Large nature of informal and unrecorded transactions  Customary transactions – e.g. customary gift  The format for capturing data and the nature of certification

19 EQUITY ISSUES IN LAND CERTIFICATION Next issues Undertake impact assessment on land certification and vulnerability Undertake baseline studies for the pilot rural land titling

20 CONCLUSION Land certification in whatever form it takes is very useful for building land administration infrastructure which is necessary for land markets Care must be taken so that the rights of the vulnerable are not lost in the process Land certification must give hope and security.

21 Thank you.


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