Land rights: the missing link for food security in Cameroon

July 2019
IIED Briefing (Jeff Bamenjo, Sandrine Kouba & Brendan Schwartz)

For decades food insecurity has been a challenge in Cameroon’s Far North region, mainly due to extreme weather and weak land legislation. Now the problem is escalating. The current humanitarian crisis caused by the Boko Haram insurgency has resulted in over 87,000 refugees and 340,000 internally displaced people in the region. Humanitarian agencies are responding with food aid but little attention is given to underlying challenges, notably access to land. The reform of land legislation is an opportunity to strengthen land rights for local communities and marginalised groups. Devolving power to local institutions and ensuring secure land tenure for displaced people and host communities must be priorities to achieve sustainable food security for everyone.