Protecting and promoting pastoralism in Africa
The Technical Centre for Agriculture and Rural Cooperation (CTA) brought out a policy brief in June 2012 on Protecting and promoting pastoralism in Africa, based on the Brussels Development Briefing on New Challenges and Opportunities for Pastoralism in ACP Countries in February 2012. It states that pastoralism supports tens of millions of people, makes the best use of harsh environments and provides many economic and social benefits. Over much of Africa, livestock convert grass into protein in areas where other agricultural activities would be risky or impossible. However, policymakers tend to favour sedentary populations and marginalise pastoralist communities, many of which are threatened by drought, fragmentation of their grazing lands, restrictions on mobility and poor access to basic services. Policy pointers: 1) Protect pastoralists’ rights to land and water and help them secure their assets; 2) Strengthen pastoral economies and encourage value-adding and diversification; 3) Empower pastoralists and encourage dialogue between pastoralists and policymakers; and 4) Invest in essential services for pastoralists, including education, health and ICTs.