Ghana: Land grabbing may pose threat to achieving SDGs

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CARITAS Ghana has stated that though Ghana has adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as the new global framework for development, the country faces the risk of failing to attain some of these goals due to the negative impact of land grabbing throughout the country.

In a report by the organization on land grabbing in Ghana, Caritas Ghana, as part of the global Caritas Confederation’s work on the SDGs mention that the attainment of some critical SDGs such as goal 1 on ending poverty, 2 on zero hunger, 12 on responsible consumption and production, 15 on life on land as
well as 16 which is on peace and justice looked grim if issues of land grabbing were not properly addressed.

The report, dubed ‘Unmasking Land Grabbing in Ghana; Restoring Livelihoods; Paving Way For Sustainable Development Goals’, stated that large scale land acquisition by external actors which often are facilitated by local agents has a high risk of displacement of people and other biodiversity from their original habitats, having grave consequences on fundamental human rights of Ghanaians as well as climate change.

It further mentioned that the implications on local and national food security and ecology cannot be overlooked and thus is an important area for
policy consideration, planning, program development and regulatory mechanisms.

Touching on land ownership and its utilization, the report stated that it is a major cause of misunderstanding and conflicts between and among communities in some parts of Ghana, with the issue of land grab can accentuate the situation leading to social destabilization and its attendant huge constrains on the national economy to manage and keep the peace.

The August 2016 report stated that there are significant trade-offs in pursuing any development option or agenda over another, if synergies are not deliberately established through policy coherence, and called for serious dialogue and negotiations to agree on mitigating mechanisms

By Michael Sena Dzansi

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