The End of Cattle’s Paradise: How Land Diversion for Ranches Eroded Food Security in The Gambos, Angola

November 2019
Amnesty International

The Gambos municipality is part of Angola’ milk region. However milk, which is life sustaining in these communities, was found to be in short supply due to diminishing grazing pastures correlating with the introduction of commercial cattle ranches to the area. It is the impact of commercial ranches on pastoralists which has removed their buffer against droughts and thus dangerously threatened food security. This paper declares that the resulting food insecurity represents a failure to protect the right to food, and as such the Angolan government is failing international and regional obligations and not upholding its own laws. The paper concludes with recommendations for urgent measures to be taken immediately to address the lack of food in pastoralist communities: a recommendation to declare a moratorium on land grants and to appoint a commission of inquiry to investigate how 46 commercial farms ended up with 2/3 of the best grazing land in the region.