Queen Mothers attend workshop on land tenure issues
Send–Ghana, a research and advocacy organization with support from Oxfam has organized a day’s workshop for the Association of Central Regional Queen mothers in Cape Coast with a call on them to support smallholder women farmers to acquire and own farm lands.
It was aimed at increasing spaces for enhanced accountability and political commitment to guarantee land tenure security for women and other small-scale women farmers in the face of land ownership and other land security issues in Ghana.
The workshop which brought together more than 80 queen mothers in the Central Region was on the theme “Strengthening partnership with traditional authorities for increased women’s access to agricultural lands”.
Madam Lois Aduamoah, Programmes Manager of Women in Law and Development for Africa (WILDAF) who took the participants through ‘land access and control, a gender perspective in Ghana’ said majority of women in Ghana had properties but did not have proper rights to those properties.
She said the cultural practice where landowners expected women to bring their husbands along to serve as witness whenever they wanted to buy lands must be critically reviewed as the men often end up taking the lands from the women.
She said most of the time many women felt comfortable farming with their husbands and therefore become so ignorant that they did not see the need to own land saying that, it was the major reason women farmers do not have access to lands.
She urged the queen mothers to help women farmers in their respective areas to have easy access to farm lands and also encouraged them to register any land that they may acquire.
Mr. Daniel Adotey, Programmes Manager at Send-Ghana, noted that 70 per cent of women living in rural areas were engaged in farming, but only one percent had their own farmlands, a situation he described as pathetic.
He also indicated that providing secured land tenure for smallholder farmers in the rural areas was a major tool to promoting economic growth, social development and alleviating poverty in those communities.
Nana Ama Amissah III, the Paramount Queen Mother of Mankessim and the President of the Central Regional Queen Mothers Association, charged the queens to carry the message received to their respective communities and ensure its compliance.
Some of the participants who spoke to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) said they had been enlightened by the workshop and prayed that such programmes are organized regularly.