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How to Support Women’s Land Rights in Mozambique? Approaches and Lessons Learnt in the Work of Four Main Organisations

The Mozambican Land Law of 1997 has been referred to as one of the best in the world, for the way in which it protects and codifies local people’s land rights. The law aims to balance different objectives and structures within one official tenure system.
While accommodating ‘traditional’ community land rights, the law also protects equal rights for men and women based on the principle of non-discrimination in the Mozambican Constitution. The Land Law further has provisions that open up for
external and larger-scale investments in agriculture, forestry, and natural resource extraction. According to the law, the absence of a formal title shall not prejudice (traditional) land use and benefit rights; but it also provides procedures for
formalising land rights for local communities, individuals and corporations. A central dilemma in the implementation of the Mozambican Land Law is that resources are needed both to claim legally established rights, and to be able to benefit from them.