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Land in Africa: Market Asset, or Secure Livelihood? Church House, Westminster, London November 8-9 2004 The Significance of Secure Access to Land for the Livelihoods and Food Security of Africa's Farmers and the Urban Poor

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G00131
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Document begins: Land in Africa: Market Asset, or Secure Livelihood? Church House, Westminster, London November 8-9 2004 The Significance of Secure Access to Land for the Livelihoods and Food Security of Africa's Farmers and the Urban Poor Prepared by Prof. Dominic Fobih (MP) Minister of Lands and Forestry, Ghana As a Contribution to the Conference 1 INTRODUCTION I am grateful to the organizers of this Conference for inviting me to share thoughts on the above topic. The topic is so important as it is directed at the heart of one of the critical issues facing Africa in its development process. Land is the basic source of livelihoods for majority of Africa's population. Subsistence farming, small-scale mining, pastoralism, reliance on timber and non-timber forest products provide sustenance to majority of Africa's farmers and urban poor. Poverty, disease and ignorance have been described as the greatest enemy to progress of developing countries and the brunt of it is felt in the rural areas where majority of the people live. It is therefore obvious that denying large segments of rural society equitable access to land and the benefits of secure land tenure lead to unanticipated costs and sometimes conflicts. Property rights to land ...

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G00131