Community-based monitoring to evidence human rights violations and changes to the ecosystem was the focus of a workshop attended by indigenous peoples from six African countries.
The Civil Society Working Group on Land Rights Reforms (the Working Group), in collaboration with the National Civil Society Council of Liberia (NCSCL), has been actively advocating land reform in particular the protection of customary land rights since 2009
FPP has received disturbing reports alleging oppressive treatment of staff belonging to the civil society organisation Green Advocates by the Liberian Government, causing Green Advocates' staff and their families to fear for their personal safety and go into hiding. FPP calls on the Liberian Government and international community representatives to take urgent and credible action to guarantee the security and safety of all Green Advocates staff and their families.
Palm oil giant Golden Veroleum (GVL) has bulldozed religious sites in southeast Liberia and has paid police armed with assault rifles to protect its plantations, a new Global Witness exposé has revealed. (1)
Communities in Liberia have spoken to palm oil sector representatives about ongoing land tenure issues and participation of peoples in future plans for their customary lands.
Sixteen representatives from across Liberia attended the 2nd Annual Tropical Forest Alliance 2020 (TFA) National Dialogue to talk about the future of both their lands and large-scale agricultural developments in the country.
The Tropical Forest Alliance 2020 is a global public-private partnership, designed to remove deforestation from the palm oil, beef, soya, and pulp and paper sectors. In Liberia it focuses on the palm oil sector and has previously worked with the government, private sector and civil society to produce a series of nine guiding principles designed to regulate the sector in Liberia.
The Civil Society Working Group on Land Rights Reform in Liberia, endorsed by the national Civil Society Council of Liberia, has been involved in intense and persistent advocacy work to raise awareness around land reforms in the country, particularly to get the general public to demand the passage of the Land Rights Act (LRA).
This review is the result of several years of fieldwork by the Sustainable Development Institute (SDI), and is the first step of a UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) funded project that examines putting into practice in Liberia the FAO Technical Guide entitled ‘Respecting free, prior and informed consent, Practical guidance for governments, companies, NGOs, indigenous peoples and local communities in relation to land acquisition’.
This review is the result of several years of fieldwork by the Liberian civil society organisation Social Entrepreneurs for Sustainable Development (SESDev), in partnership with the UK-based Forest Peoples Programme (FPP), and is part of a UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) funded project that examines putting into practice in Liberia the FAO Technical Guide entitled ‘Respecting free, prior and informed consent, Practical guidance for governments, companies, NGOs, indigenous peoples and local communities in relation to land acquisition’.
Letter from the Sustainable Development Institute (SDI), Social Entrepreneurs for Sustainable Development (SESDev) and Forest Peoples Programme to the Impacts Division and Complaints Panel (CP) of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), challenging the CP's 19th September 2015 decision and findings that Golden Veroleum Liberia (GVL) operations are broadly compliant with the RSPO standard.
Click here to read the letter
From 16-19 Nov. 2015, FPP in collaboration with its local partners working across the Africa region organized in Yaoundé in Cameroon a meeting on Monitoring Reporting and Verification (MRV). The objective of this MRV meeting was to develop a common approach to community-based monitoring and set out appropriate indicators and tools for MRV that FPP and partners can mainstream throughout various initiatives on the ground to secure the rights of forest communities.
Several years of fieldwork by the Forest Peoples Programme (FPP) and civil society partners in Liberia has revealed the extent to which palm oil company Golden Veroleum Liberia (GVL) and its lead investor Golden Agri-Resources (GAR) are continuing to operate without the free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) of local communities within their concession area, despite the companies’ claims to have learned from past mistakes.
Golden Veroleum and Golden Agri-Resource’s palm oil operations in Liberia are compounding poverty and food insecurity by taking land without community consent and making hollow promises of development benefits, says new report
Silas Siakor, environmental activist and Goldman Prize Winner, and the Sustainable Development Institute (SDI) have been working on community mapping throughout Liberia for many years.
The global forest crisis is worsening and infringements of the rights of indigenous peoples and forest-dependent communities are rising, according to a detailed assessment of nine country cases. Climate change mitigation and conservation policies must place community land rights and human rights centre-stage if they are to achieve the goal of sustainably reducing deforestation says the report.
The UK-listed company, Equatorial Palm Oil (EPO), which is threatening to seize land owned by Liberians in defiance of commitments by Liberia’s President, will today receive a visit from affected communities. Members of the Jogbahn Clan, together with representatives from Liberian and international NGOs, will deliver a petition with over 90,000 signatures, reminding EPO that it does not have community consent to expand onto their lands, and that doing so could escalate violence. EPO’s past operations in Liberia have triggered allegations of conflict and human rights abuses.
Our partners in the Sustainable Development Institute in Liberia are asking for international help to remind the Liberian President of her promise to protect community land from the UK company Equatorial Palm Oil UK. They are asking as many people as possible to sign their petition.
The Golden Veroleum Liberia (GVL) concession agreement was concluded on 16th August 2010 and provides a lease for 220,000 ha of land to GVL in Liberia's southern counties. Community grievances concerning the loss of land to the company, the destruction of crops and water sources, the lack of respect for communities' rights to free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) in land acquisition and associated allegations of intimidation, arrests and harassment directed at community leaders, led to several complaints.