База данных по гендерной проблематике и правам на землю


Законодательство о земле

The Land Act (No. 19/97) of 1 October 1997:

  • Article 3 recalls that land is the property of the state and cannot be sold or otherwise alienated, mortgaged or encumbered (9).
  • Article 10(1) states that national individual and corporate persons, men and women, as well as local communities may be holders of the right of land use and benefit.
  • Article 12 stipulates that the right of land use and benefit, Direito de Uso e Aproveitamento da Terra (DUAT), is acquired, with no distinction between men and women, by means of:
    a) occupancy by individuals and by local communities, in accordance with customary norms and practices which do not contradict the Constitution;
    b) occupancy by national individuals who have been using the land in good faith for at least ten years;
    c) authorization of an application submitted by an individual or corporate person in the manner established by this Law.
  • Article 13 guarantees that men and women who are members of a local community may request individual land titles. Women are therefore entitled to hold and register land either jointly with others or independently but the process for registering interests in land is reportedly slow and expensive, which can discourage them from using it (27).
  • Article 16 stipulates that the right of land use and benefit may be transferred by inheritance, without distinction of gender (16).
  • Article 23 stipulates that Presidents of Municipal Councils and Settlement Councils and, where there are no municipal structures, District Administrators are the only bodies entitled to authorize land-use and benefit rights (9).

Decree 66/98 on Land Law Regulations of 8 December 1998amended in 2003 and 2010:

  • Article 9, on the acquisition of the right of land use and benefit by occupancy by local communities, states that local communities which occupy land according to customary practices have the right to acquire the right of land use and benefit. Those areas that are subject to legal reservation are excluded from this provision (16).
  • Article 10, on the acquisition of the right to land use and benefit by occupancy in good faith by national individuals, is gender-neutral and guarantees the right of national individuals who, in good faith, have used a land area for a period of at least ten years to acquire the land use and benefit (16).
  • Article 13, on the rights of the title holders, enunciates the following rights of landholders:
    a) to defend their rights, in accordance with the law, against any encroachment by another person;
    b) to have access to their parcel of land and to public water resources through neighbouring parcels, and to create the servitudes necessary for this purpose (16).
  • Article 20 was amended in 2003 to set up procedures for the registration of inherited land use rights and secure rights to customary servitudes.
  • Article 21, on the proof of land use and benefit, stipulates these can be constituted by:
    a) a certified extract of the Register;
    b) testimonial evidence submitted by someone who is aware of the acquisition of the right by occupancy;
    c) expert evidence and other methods permitted by law (16).
  • Article 21(2), on the claim to the right of land use and benefit by two parties, is gender-neutral in the sense that the right to land use and benefit is bestowed to the party who presents earlier acquisition (16). This provision is seen as an opportunity for improvement of women´s land rights in case of a land dispute arising from the couple (9).
  • Article 27 was amended in 2010 to introduce an obligation to consult local community on legal procedures related to land administration and land use management. These communities should participate actively in the decision making through the local consulting committees.

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