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Land has played a critical role in Tanzania’s development. Current land tenure frameworks, issues and conflicts in the country have historical roots dating back to the pre-colonial period. The periods of German and British rule were also formative in establishing current land sector rules and challenges, as has been the post-independence period. During the pre-colonial period, all land was owned communally and all members of the community had equal access. When the Tanganyika was under German Colonial rule (1891-1919), there were three types of land tenure: freehold titles created out of conveyance, leasehold granted by the emperor and customary tenure for natives. When the British took over (1919-1961), they recognized existing German laws and put in place new land laws such as the Land Ordinance of 1923. After independence, freehold titles were converted into government leases and later rights of occupancy.

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Porters carry sacks of maize at Nansio port in Ukerewe island.

Tanzania has a unique position for Agri trade in the region

12 September 2021

Tanzania is East Africa’s food forte. That is how it was seen during the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) 2021 Summit in Nairobi held between 7-10 September, which sought to highlight pathways to recovery and a resilient food systems. Sadly, President Uhuru Kenyatta, who was hosting the summit…

Zanzibar: Digital Data Collection to Secure Land Tenure

Zanzibar: Digital Data Collection to Secure Land Tenure

10 September 2021

A new approach helps resolve land tenure issues faster and more efficiently. Download the project brief Secure Tenure on Zanzibar, a pilot program conducted by the Nairobi-based organisation Spatial Collective, and funded by Cities Alliance, shows that widely available and affordable technology…

Dar es Salaam area

Resist divorcing land titling from land use planning in informal settlements

9 September 2021

As it was widely reported in the newspapers of August 12, 2021, the government in partnership with NMB Bank, has launched a five-year Plot Loan scheme to enable land owners in informal settlements to survey and get title to their land. This was in part a result of the realisation that land owners…



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To secure equal rights to land, bring men and women together

To secure equal rights to land, bring men and women together

13 July 2021

There is an underlying tension in the land rights movement that is rarely addressed head on, which is the perception that securing women’s land rights threatens community land rights. Community land rights are typically held by indigenous people, small-scale and subsistence farmers, pastoralists,…

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Women and Community Land Rights: Investing in Local Champions

Women and Community Land Rights: Investing in Local Champions

  Women’s Land Tenure Security (WOLTS) is a practical action-research project on gender and land, led by development consultants Mokoro. For more than five years WOLTS has collaborated with local partners People Centered Conservation (PCC) in Mongolia and HakiMadini in Tanzania, investigating the…