IGAD Land Governance Programme

Land is a source for livelihoods and a valuable economic asset in the IGAD region. Drawing on experiences from other land related partnerships at national, regional and global levels, Switzerland supports the Intergovernmental Authority on Development IGAD to translate continental and global land governance frameworks and guidelines into practice in order to improve access to land and tenure security for all, especially for vulnerable groups like pastoralists, women and youth.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Horn of Africa
Agriculture & food security
Agricultural policy
Agricultural land resources
Women’s equality organisations and institutions
01.09.2019 - 30.08.2024
CHF  3’515’000
Background The IGAD region comprises the countries of Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda with a population of over 221.3 Million people. It is charaterized by high population growth, large arid and semi-arid areas (more than 80%), high food insecurity due to recurrent drought, persistence of conflicts and poverty. The IGAD establishment agreement identified about twenty cooperation areas among which food security and environmental protection, conflict prevention, management and resolution, and economic cooperation and integration were identified as entry points for collaboration among Member States. Member States as principal right bearers agreed to work collectively to  improve land governance. As regional economic community, the AU Declaration on Land Issues and Challenges in Africa is mandating IGAD to do so. Improved performance on land policies is required in terms of formulation and implementation. Main challenges today include right holders’ insecurity of tenure rights over land and natural resources, particularly access to land for women, youth, pastoralists and other vulnerable groups, lack of sound land policies on land expropriation and compensation, and limited governance capacity at all levels.
Objectives Improved access to land and security of land rights for all land users in the IGAD region achieved through the implementation of the AU Declaration on Land Issues and Challenges in Africa, leading to enhanced socio-economic development, peace and security.
Target groups Pastoralist, local authorities, women, youth, policy makers and parliamentarians, traditional and religious leaders, middle level decision makers and other professionals and academia 
Medium-term outcomes

Outcome 1: Cross-border authorities and multi-stakeholders in the Karamoja cluster are using participatory negotiated territorial planning to address tenure security and natural resources use challenges

Outcome 2: IGAD Member States reviewing land laws, family laws, or civil laws and policies to enhance security of tenure for women

Outcome 3: IGAD Member States implementing appropriate frameworks and instruments for securing land tenure for marginalized groups and preventing and managing conflicts related to land and natural resources.

Outcome 4: IGAD and Member States Capacity strengthened to implement the AU Declaration on land issues and challenges in Africa


Expected results:  

IGAD’s Land Unit functions efficiently and effectively.

The project steering committee and joint working group on land functions efficiently and effectively.

Successful implementation of the IGAD Land Governance Strategy, Mainstreaming Strategy and Policy Convergence Strategy.

Increased protections for women’s land rights in policy, legal and institutional frameworks of the IGAD Member States.

Increased participation of women in decision-making positions in land governance institutions at National and Regional level.

Regional dialogues on land governance operational.

An IGAD Region Land Data Sharing Policy developed and implemented.

Results from previous phases:   Following the mandate derived from the AU Declaration on Land Issues and Challenges in Africa, the project allowed IGAD to establish its own Land Unit. This step empowered IGAD to implement as first Regional Economic Community the mandate by the AU to establish an institutional framework to facilitate coordination among and mutual learning by Member States as they develop/review their land policies. For this, an IGAD Regional Multi-Stakeholder Platform on Land Governance and an IGAD Land Governance and Pastoralism Forum have been established. Phase I allowed to also review the policy, legal and institutional frameworks for land governance for the IGAD Member States. And it produced an IGAD Land Governance Strategy 2017-22, a Strategy for Mainstreaming Land Governance in IGAD Programs, and IGAD Land Governance Business Plan 2019-23, and eventually a IGAD Regional Land Policy Convergence Framework, aimed at enhancing land policy cohesion within the region in support of regional integration. Challenges remained around knowledge generation and dissemination and in the development of national and regional monitoring and evaluation systems. Partnerships, coordination mechanisms and resources mobilization endeavors were weak and need to be enhanced in phase II.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
International or foreign NGO
Other International Organization
  • Other international or foreign NGO North
  • Other OI

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    3’515’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    3’325’553 Total project since first phase Swiss budget CHF   20’950’000 Budget inclusive project partner CHF   5’610’000
Project phases Phase 2 01.09.2019 - 30.08.2024   (Current phase) Phase 1 01.10.2014 - 31.05.2019   (Completed)