Senegal

SEN

Senegal

After achieving independence in 1960, Senegal experienced several years of economic growth, mostly based on agricultural resources and increases in productivity. Senegal has a population of about 12 million people; 58% of the population is rural, but the majority of people living in rural areas are poor. Although 60% of the population works in the agricultural sector, agriculture accounts for only 15% of the total GDP of the country.

The Constitution of 2001 recognizes economic and social rights, including the right to own property for every citizen. The National Domain Law was intended to limit the influence of ethnic and religious hierarchies; it encourages a more productive use of land and the creation of better condition for agricultural exports, while also giving control over land to decentralized government bodies. The Rural Community Law of 1972 established the structure for rural councils, which have the authority to allocate use rights to land and the criteria for the improvement of production-based on local development plans. Despite several other land laws that have been passed, land access and use is primarily regulated by customary law that generally tends to favor elites.

Consequently, land disputes are increasingly common in Senegal. Additionally, open access rules and practices on public land lead to a situation in which everyone is entitled to use land without any consideration of the damages that may result. Mechanisms for dispute resolution include formal and customary procedures as well as alternative systems, such as arbitration boards and municipal councils. 

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Land Governance Assessment Framework (LGAF)

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    Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure

    Legend: National laws adoption of the VGGT principle
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    Note: The Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forests in the Context of National Food Security (The VGGTs) were endorsed by the Committee on World Food Security in 2012.

    The "VGGT indicators" dataset has been created by Nicholas K. Tagliarino, PhD Candidate at the University of Groningen, with support from Daniel Babare and Myat Noe (LLB Students, University of Groningen). The indicators assess national laws in 50 countries across Asia, Africa, and Latin America against international standards on expropriation, compensation, and resettlement as established by Section 16 of the VGGTs.

    Each indicator relates to a principle established in section 16 of the VGGTs. Hold the mouse against the small "i" button above for a more detailed explanation of the indicator.

    Answering the questions posed by these indicators entails analyzing a broad range of national-level laws, including national constitutions, land acquisition acts, land acts, community land acts, agricultural land acts, land use regulations, and some court decisions.

    Media

    Latest News

    2 February 2017
    Senegal

    By: Nellie Peyton

    Date: 1 February 2017

    Source: Manitoba Co-Operator

    Female-led work is vital to rural communities in Senegal — now women are organizing 
to lead the fight against multinational agribusiness.

    The women of Thiamene, a tiny straw hut village in northern Senegal, used to scrape together a living by collecting wild baobab fruit and selling milk from their cows.

    Senegal
    PROCASUR and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) are pleased to announce a Learning Route initiative on inclusive agricultural value chains which will take place in West and Central Africa, as part of the "Strengthening capacities and tools for scaling and disseminating innovations", implemented by PROCASUR and financed by IFAD.
     
    Africa
    Senegal

    The piles of concrete and twisted metal in the Tobago neighbourhood beside Dakar's international airport were home to Senegalese families until bulldozers arrived last month without warning.

    A line of six homes remain, given a reprieve until the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Looking at the rubble of their former homes, the head of the residents' association says he does not believe the government's explanation that the houses were a security risk.

    After all, said Daouda Mbengue, the airport was due to move to a new site outside Dakar next year.

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    Displaying 1 - 6 of 315
    Reports & Research
    June 2017

    A recent surge in agribusiness plantation deals has increased pressures on land in many low- and middle-income countries. Rural people have mobilised to protect their rights, seek better terms or oppose the deals altogether. Since 2014, an initiative in Cameroon, Ghana and Senegal has worked to help people harness the law in order to have greater control over decisions that affect them – a process commonly referred to as legal empowerment. 

    Tenure and Investment in Africa cover image
    Reports & Research
    February 2017

    This synthesis of our findings from an investigation of tenure risk in East, West, and Southern Africa, shows that a majority of tenure disputes are caused by the displacement of local peoples, indicating that companies and investors are not doing enough to understand competing claims to the land they acquire or lease. This failure in diligence is particularly noteworthy given that a majority of the disputes analyzed had materially significant impacts: indeed, a higher proportion of projects in Africa are financially impacted by tenure dispute than any other region in the world. 

    Reports & Research
    February 2017

    Amid the realities of major political turbulence, there was growing recognition in 2016 that the land rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities are key to ensuring peace and prosperity, economic development, sound investment, and climate change mitigation and adaptation. Despite equivocation by governments, a critical mass of influential investors and companies now recognize the market rationale for respecting community land rights.

    Access to farmland gets quick and dirty in sub-Saharan Africa cover image
    Policy Papers & Briefs
    January 2017

    Who can access and use the land? The answer to this age-old question is changing fast in many parts of rural Africa. Land that used to be allocated within the community by chiefs is now increasingly changing hands in more diverse ways. The wealthy and well-connected within the community or from further afield are frequently able to override local statutory or customary land rights, dispossessing the previous occupants or forcing them to divide their already small plots of land.