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Land

LAND
Land can be defined as any portion, large or small, of the surface of the earth, considered by itself, or as belonging to an individual or a people, as a country, estate, farm, or tract. In my country Kenya land is a precious thing and everyone works tooth and nail to have a piece of land in their name. Land is security you know. When one has a piece of land they feel honoured and its an achievement. Land can also be a measure of how wealthy one is. Land is the basis of man existence without it man cannot exist, without access to it man cannot labor.
Conflicts around the world are linked to the use and control of land and other natural resources. These conflicts constrain economic opportunities , create environmental damage and at their most extreme, lead to loss of human life. Poor households and communities all too bear the heaviest burdens of land related conflicts. A good example of how I discovered the importance of land is during the post election violence in my country Kenya. Good neighbors turned to one another killing each other, others ran away from their farms fearing for their lives, went and settled somewhere in tents living their land to their neighbors and lived in desperation because of having nowhere to sleep no food, all because of lack of land. They lived like squatters and refugees in their own country.
I live in a town in Nairobi and what I eat are products from land, I may not be the one who tills the land but we realized recently when the rainfall was not adequate many people suffered because there was no food, prices of food stuffs went high to tell us that we are so dependant on land that we cannot do without its fertility.
Land lets us see the fruits of our labour, it has created employment, many people are working in farms growing all sorts of food stuffs others are working in the markets where the products grown from it are sold. Land eradicates poverty more especially in Africa. A person who has land cannot be termed as poor, one who has it has safety and security since they will grow crops for domestic consumption and for sale. To us women is one form of empowerment, men don’t like women who are thinking of acquiring land because they feel insecure.
In conclusions land brings security, development and secures human rights for women and children. Land is fundamental in order to halve poverty by 2015 as stated in the millennium development goals (MDGs).

Comments

JaniceW's picture

Thank you for your thoughts

Thank you for reminding us how far Kenya has come but that work is still needed to stop the violence associated with land rights and to bring peace to our sisters, brothers and neighbours in Kenya. I applaud you for speaking out and sharing with us the challenges that still exist in meeting the MDGs. I hope you will continue to share your thoughts with us and I look forward to reading more from you.

jadefrank's picture

Nairobi

Hi Monicah,

Thank you for sharing your interpretation of Land, for the perspective of a woman in Nairobi and the significance of property in your country. It's always a pleasure to read your journals and I am so pleased to see that you participated!

Cheers,
Jade

Radha.Friedman's picture

Thank you

Monicah,

Thank you for raising your voice about this important subject.

There was a great article on the front page of the Christian Science Monitor last week about land issues in Africa which I think you would like. "Africa's Continental Divide: Land Disputes - African land reform, plot by plot, may be the foundation for solving so much else – from famine to poverty to genocide."

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Africa/2010/0130/Africa-s-continental-div...

Best,
Radha

Radha Friedman

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