Governance of Tenure

Policy reforms in Senegal

A national multi-stakeholder platform on the Voluntary Guidelines has helped move forward work on more equitable access to natural resources that started in the 1990s and which has now led to a new National Land Policy document. The Voluntary Guidelines serve both the National Tenure Reform Commission and civil society and provide a framework for consolidating the various interests on governance of tenure. Dissemination and implementation of the Voluntary Guidelines is strengthened by support to the reform process. Inclusive dialogue at multiple levels has targeted local governance processes, including pilot activities, which are making a difference on the ground.

Before the first national workshop in 2014, a multi-stakeholder committee, comprising representatives from civil society, farmers’ organizations, government, private sector and research, worked beforehand to define the content and format of the workshop. The workshop’s debates were lively and covered topics such as the land tenure security for family farming and agri-business. The participants underlined the need to pursue this dialogue between actors who have rarely had the opportunity to exchange views.

Civil society organizations used a learning programme to create an action plan to use the Voluntary Guidelines in the national reform process. A participant commented: “As a result of the training a consultation framework has been set up with civil society so that the next law submitted to Parliament can be analysed with the support of civil society, and in the light of the Voluntary Guidelines.”

The new National Land Policy Document reflects the vision, approach and objectives of the Voluntary Guidelines. It was prepared in 2016 and submitted to the President of the Republic. 

FAO has provided technical support to Senegal since 2014, with financial support from Belgium, France and Italy.