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ELEMENTS OF CONTEXT
Tanzania has a population of about 42 million people and 12,000 villages. But only 0.02 % of citizens possess a traditional land ownership. (5)
Agriculture and land grabbing
Only half of the land is arable and less than a quarter are actually cultivated. “Few people only have large land resources (Tanzania) . What is happening is that the rich inside and outside the country are in a race to land grabbing” (LARRRI – Institute for Research on Land Rights and Resources). According to the Tanzanian Ministry of Agriculture, Food Security and Cooperatives , small farmers produce more than 90 % of the country’s food. (5)
For several years, the Tanzanian government had favored land grabbing by foreign investors (multinational), particularly for the production of biofuels. But a recent decision (early 2013) should greatly reduce this problem.
HISTORY OF CITIES – HERITAGE
Lack of access to finance is one of the major bottlenecks to improved housing. The majority of dwellers in Dar es Salaam’s dense settlements earn their living through small business and other informal means. Small daily incomes make it difficult to obtain the lump sum of money necessary to undertake home construction or make a meaningful home improvement. There are few options for low income households to access the finance needed to build. (1)
This has meant that homeowners are building informally and incrementally. Incremental building is a self financing strategy. In Dar es Salaam, families often save in the form of cement blocks, which are resistant to the elements and not frequently stolen when left on a building site. When sufficient fundsare available, a foundation can be laid, and later walls build. Structures can remain unroofed and unoccupied for long periods of time because saving for the roof is difficult for most low income families. They cannot be bought gradually and are often stolen. Once the roof is completed a familiy will often move in without completing health and sanitation measures for a healthy home. (1)
RIGHT TO HOUSING
THE SITUATION UNTIL 2013
The Village Land Act 1999 is a new land law that was passed by Parliament in 1999. It did not come into force until May 2001. The Land Act deals with land rights outside villages or reserved areas; such areas are called “General Land” (less than 10% of the territory), that is to say, outside of villages and restricted areas. The Village Land Act deals only with land rights with- in village areas. Most of Tanzania is “Village Land”(about 70%). Since they were passed, Tanzania land law no longer has any reliance on English law. “Reserved land” means areas governed by different listed laws (e.g. Forest Act or Highway Act) or hazard land (e.g. mangrove swamps, reefs, wetlands, etc.)
The main purpose of the Village Land Act is to set up a community-based system for managing land ownership in rural areas. This includes a system through which every villager may get his/her land right formally recorded as existing (registration). A certificate of ownership may be issued once the right is formally registered (a title deed). It was also established that Village Councils are called “land managers” in their respective areas. But as land managers, they are only trustees and can in no way claim to be or behave like owners of the land. This is to allow the villagers to manage their land in a transparent manner, with procedures leading to a legal weight to customary land rights, with the possibility of settlement of land disputes at the community level. This requires the development of various organs of management of village land : Village Land Manager – Village Land Officer – Village Land Committee – Adjudication Committee – Adjudication Officer – Village Land Council.
Other land laws :
The Land Acquisition Act, 1967
Land Registration Ordinance Cap 334
Town and Country Planning Ordinance Cap 378
Public Lands (Preserved Areas) Ordinance Cap 338
Customary Leaseholds (Enfranchisement) Act 1968
The Courts (Land Disputes Settlements) Act, 2002
For more :
In 2011, the government of Tanzania has led to the recognition of their rights to the land to a tribe of hunter-gatherers, exceptional in East Africa. (Pambazuka News) (3)
NEW LEGISLATION SINCE January 2013 !
In 2013 , Tanzania has adopted strict legislation to oppose land grabbing. It now banned over 5000 ha for rice and 100,000 ha for sugar land acquisitions. (4)
This action is a relief for organizations defending land rights claim for several years using the government to stop land grabbing . For example, in 2011, about 1,825 disputes , involving nearly 1,100 powerful investors. (5)
SITUATION UNTIL 2013
Despite these land rights villagers, the land grabbing phenomenon continues in Tanzania. Among the causes, observers cite the complexity of the procedure put in place, but also the fact that the current law allows land under Community rules to pass under private management as a general earth … allowing developers and investors to monopolize territories. (6)
Within the framework of international agreements, Tanzania is committed to mapping the fertile and densely populated one of its regions to help foreign investors find and purchase the land they covet.
A NEW SITUATION SINCE 2013
The new device to prevent land grabbing has been established. It will probably take a few months to see if this new device is truly effective.
SOME INTERESTING PRACTICES
Social and economic aspects
QUALITY OF HOUSING
INFORMAL HOUSING / SLUM / HOMELESS
ROLE OF PUBLIC AUTHORITIES
Cultural aspects – Religious – Symbolic
Bibliography & Sitography
Habitat for Humanity in Tanzania
Liz Alden Wily, “Community-based land tenure management – questions and answers about Tanzania’s new Village Land Act”, IIED, 2003.
Manuel Domergue “Afrique : des limites à l’accaparement” – Alternatives Economiques n°321 – 2013
Orton Kiishweko, “Contenir la course à l’accaparement des terres”, Inter Press Service News Agency, déc 2012
“Conflits fonciers en Tanzanie : aux racines du problème”, Ministère de l’Economie et des Finances, France, 2012
MAJOR PROBLEMS BY CIVIL SOCIETY
CLAIMS MAJOR CIVIL SOCIETY
CIVIL SOCIETY ACTORS
HOMMELESS PEOPLE’S FEDERATION OF TANZANIA = just beginning to develop as a city- and country-wide movement. Using savings as a core strategy, the Federation has initiated enumeration exercises, exchange programs, and has begun to broken with local governments. Website
HABITAT FOR HUMANITY IN TANZANIA = In July 2009, HFH Tanzania launched a housing microfinance program as a means to assist residents of Dar es Salaam’s informal settlements to improve their living conditions through access to affordable housing finance. HFH Tanzania developed the MAKAZI BORA home improvement loan which is designed to support ongoing incremental building. MAKAZI BORA roughly translates to ‘improved housing’ in Kiswahili and has proven quite popular with local residents. The loans are highly flexible and uses can include completing unoccupied houses, finishing already occupied houses, extending extra rooms onto houses, repairing worn out components of existing housing, and building auxilary structures such as a latrine or outdoor kitchen. Website – Contact them
LARRRI/HAKIARDHI = The Land Rights Research and Resources Institute is a Tanzanian national level non governmental, not for profit organization that was founded in 1994. The Institute was established in recognition of the need to generate and sustain public debates, and participation in the rural areas on issues of land tenure. Website
TANZANIA LAND ALLIANCE – TALA = coalition of civil society, experts, institutions, founded in 2010. It was founded in 2010 with a focus to undertake joint advocacy activities in a bid to spearhead the attainment of land rights for small producers in Tanzania. Website