A Time for Change? Comments on Chad’s draft Land Code

July 2015
IIED and Tearfund (Lotenzo Cotula and Thierry Berger)

The process to develop a new Land Code in Chad is a positive step forward but the draft reflects a highly centralised system of land ownership, management and administration which risks excluding most people from the means to document and protect their land rights while also fostering widespread tenure insecurity. It considers customary rights as ‘temporary’ and gives full legal protection to a land title, which converts customary rights into land ownership, which is likely to be inaccessible for the vast majority of the population. It does not address pastoral rights or gender nor provide clear rules and safeguards for the allocation of land to commercial investments. It only includes limited provisions on dispute resolution. Should a new law be adopted, resources for implementation, including capacity building, would need to be carefully budgeted for.