LEI have been managing the Land Administration and Management Project (LAMP) for AusAID in the Philippines since 2001. The project has focused on institutional reform, policy development, improving tenure security through land registration, and introducing valuation reform.
It has been an exciting 6 months for LEI with our strategy to target new projects in Africa starting to come to fruition. We have had two recent project wins in Lesotho being awarded an MCA contract for a Systematic Land Regularisation and Land Allocation Project in July 2009 and being formally notified of our success in bidding for a second project, Modernisation of Land Services and Institutional Strengthening, in August 2009.
LEI is supporting the US company ARD in implementing a USAID-funded project aimed at addressing property rights and land tenure issues in Timor Leste. Land tenure has experienced a rather tenuous history in Timor-Leste. Formerly known as East Timor, the country was occupied as a colony of Portugal for some 450 years, experienced three years of Japanese occupation during WW2, some twenty five years of Indonesian occupation following its first attempts at independence late 1975, through to formal acceptance of independence in May 2002. During each of these occupations, some property rights were granted. However, since independence, no property rights have been issued and no former rights are recognised, as no land law under the new Government yet exist.
Since our last newsletter, AusAID has approved the restructure of the technical assistance team, which will see all our national adviser positions extended up to the official end of AusAID’s Phase 2, in November 2008. t also permits some additional international cadastral inputs, to help the TA team to finalise its capacity-building program. AusAID has also approved the proposal for an extension of technical assistance to June 2009, to correspond with the official end of the World Bank Phase 2.
LEI has had some good news over the last quarter with AusAID advising of their intention to extend the contract for two years to complete the 5 year commitment of development assistance to LAMPII. This will see LAMP II continue till January 2011.
This short article is written to raise awareness of the ever present theme of gender and the making of inroads towards positive social development by Kate Dalrymple. After a pleasing response to the Laos Community Education and Gender Lessons presentation made at the Knowledge Sharing Workshop, I’m following up with some general discussion for practitioners in our industry to consider. Conveniently, this coincides with the Global Land Tools Network (www.gltn.net) forum discussion on gender responsive land tools (Sept 8 – Oct 15, 2008) which I encourage you all to visit.
As our Phase 2 draws to a close, plans for various extensions are on the drawing board. Since ourlast newsletter, LEI has submitted a plan to AusAID for a small restructure of the technical assistance team. This will see all our national adviser positions extended up to the official end of AusAID’s Phase 2, in November 2008. It will also permit some additional international cadastral inputs, to help the TA team to finalise its capacity-building program.
For the last two and a half years I have been based in Leyte with the LAMP2 operations as the International Adviser for Systematic Adjudication. Over these years there has been some tremendous achievements made.
Philippines-Australia Land Administration and Management Project –Phase II. A Model in Land Transaction Services and Records Management. On the 11 March 2008, AusAID representatives were accompanied by the Team Leader Ian Lloyd to the LAMP II project site in Leyte province. This visit provided the donors with a lasting impression on the commendable achievements of the project in the management and operations of the One-Stop Shop as well as in the field titling operations involving community mobilization, systematic adjudication and land surveys.
LEI recently signed a contract extension for the World Bank funded Land Administration and Survey Project in Samoa, part of the WB's broader Second Infrastructure Asset Management Project (SIAMII). The primary contract was completed in 2006, however supplementary credit has been provided to enable completion of the vertical component of the geodetic network as well as additional assistance in land registration system and land information systems integration.
The Project is now in its fifth year of Phase 2 and there are encouraging signs that the host organisation, the National Land Management Authority, is committed to continuing the project into the next decade. Initially they will seek an extension of Phase 2 and then a third phase! This is good news for our technical assistance team, as we are in the last eight months of our inputs. Although the Bank-funded project continues until 30 June 2009, LEI’s contract with AusAID finishes in November 2008.
In previous newsletters we have reported on the major expansion program the TA team is supporting here. It is only ten months before the end of TA inputs for Phase 2 and yet the project is increasing in size - we have just added five provinces, taking us to 14 provinces where systematic adjudication is supported. And of course the Department of Lands must also build capacity within five additional provincial land offices to support the flow of subsequent registrations that are expected ter the public education program. But that is not all … we are currently in the middle of the World Bank, AusAID and GTZ assessment of the project, where we expect the go-ahead to be given to the expansion into the remaining three provinces, commencing in a few months!