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House passes Land Authority Bill

Jos Garneo Cephas-A Development Journalist
File: Some Liberians celebrating  victory in land dispute
File: Some Liberians celebrating victory in land dispute

MONROVIA, LIBERIA-The National Legislature has finally concurred with the Senate and passed into law the establishment of the Land Authority.

The passage into law of the Land Authority Bill will now consolidate land functions from several agencies including the Ministry of Land and Mines and Energy, the Center for National Document and Record Agency, among others into a one stop shop institution for land matters in Liberia.

The Bill was passed into law September 20, 2016 by the House of Legislature, at Capitol Hill in Monrovia.

The Land Authority shall seek to address all land disputes, policy formulation, and adequate administration services and ensure the implementation of the National Land Rights Policy.

According to the Act, the President shall nominate five commissioners to manage the Authority following confirmation by the Senate.

Until the nomination of in due course by the President, Development Specialists advice is that two Administrative Commissioners, out of the five to conduct the Authority’s affairs under its one year transitional period in the absence of the approval of the over-all needed budget for the Authority. 

The specialists believe this could appropriate until initial funding for the Authority is made available by government. 
The Government of Liberia and its international partners recently spoke of strides was being made in Liberia’s Land Rights and Land Policy Reform in six years.

As part of the reform the Chairman of the Special Interim Land Task Force of Liberia, Dr. Othello Brandy, described the importance of land and its attachment to Liberians as “livelihood to the people”.

The establishment of the Land Authority of Liberia is the beginning to the first step to land administration and management to indeed guarantee the assurance of access to land under the reform as promised by the Liberian Government.

The USAID-Land Governance Support Activities Project in Liberia (LGSA) is one of government’s international partners in the Land reform campaign of Liberia.

USAID-Land Governance Support Activities Projects (LGSA) Chief of Party, Dr. Mark Marquardt, prior to the passage of the Land Authority Bill into law, lauded the six years progress in an interview with

“The rest of the work we have is to move forward, Liberia made remarkable progress in the last six years in dealing with land issue, to address land issue through research, through consultations to try understanding what the situation is, how we got where we are and develop a vision of where we want to go,” Dr. Mark Marquardt said.

The harder part of the reform is the implementation and moving the activities forward.

As part of his institution’s support, LGSA in collaboration with the Interim Land Task Force is conducting training of communities’ radio journalists across Liberia to sensitize and provide   public education and information on land issues.


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