Women’s Land Rights Scorecard: The failure of land policy and legal reforms in securing women’s land rights in Africa
The realization of women’s land rights often tends to get no further than the level of action plans and policies that are rarely implemented, due to a lack of real political commitment and the patriarchal values that still predominate in Africa. To realize full gender equality (Goal 17), the implementation plan of the African Union (AU)’s Agenda 2063 recommends that 20% of rural women have access to and control of land by 2023. This paper documents how policy commitments are translated into national legislation. A consortium comprising Oxfam, the Institute for Poverty, Land and Agrarian Studies (PLAAS), and the Plateforme Régionale des Organisations Paysannes d’Afrique Centrale (PROPAC) has developed a women’s land rights scorecard as a quantifiable tool to measure country performance on implementing the provisions of women’s land rights instruments such as the AU’s Framework and Guidelines on Land Policy in Africa. The study found that while statutory laws to protect women’s land rights are in place, there are loopholes and gaps in adherence to these laws at the community level.
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