WINDHOEK: There is an urgent need to finalise land use plans in order to address sustainable land management effectively in Namibia.
Co-ordinator of the Country Pilot Partnership for Integrated Sustainable Land Management Programme (CPP-ISLM), Birga Ndombo raised the concern during the opening of a four-day international conference on sustainable Iand and natural resource management.
The conference kicked off here on Tuesday.
Ndombo indicated that new technologies for appropriate farming technologies need to be introduced and rolled out to increase productivity.
“Natural resource-based enterprise development has the potential to unlock rural benefits, diversify livelihoods, and reduce pressure on natural resources,” she stressed.
However, awareness of the impact of land degradation and its manifestations still requires more effort.
She said policies that promote land tenure systems and devolve rights over natural resource utilisation are significant in addressing land degradation.
According to Ndombo, programmes addressing land degradation issues should be long-term interventions to maximise impacts.
Monitoring and evaluation should also be an integral part of the implementation to document real impacts of the programme.
The CCP supports a number of community projects around the country, as well as training in various activities through its innovative grant mechanism.
These projects cover areas such as conservation, farming, fire management, holistic rangeland management, poultry farming, livestock husbandry, application of fertilisers and livestock marketing.
Project sites being support by the programme in the central-northern regions amongst others include the Uukolonkadhi Conservancy or community forest, the Afoti community, Ongushu Farmers Co-operative, Ohepi Community Forest, Eundafano Women Co-operative and Ehangano Community Forest.
An innovative coordinating framework is in place involving seven ministries, United Nations (UN) agencies, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), academic institutions and donors to give policy direction, and to monitor and take the steps needed to improve the impact of the different projects. The financial and administrative management of the programme is overseen by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET). Global Environment Facility (GEF) provided funds worth US dollars 40 million (about N.dollars 320 million), while the Government of Namibia, the World Bank, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the European Union, GTZ and the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC-Nam) fund other projects linked to the CPP.
The conference ends Friday.