COMIFAC-USFS: Regional Technical validation of Land use planning and management Guides in Central Africa


Please download the Final Communiqué of the Workshop:

The Land use planning and management Guides in Central Africa were at the heart of an important regional workshop held from 7 to 8 May 2013 in Douala, Cameroon. It was organized by the Central Africa Forests Commission (COMIFAC) with the support of the Central Africa Regional Programme for the Environment (CARPE), the United States Forest Service (USFS), in collaboration with the Central Africa Protected Areas Network (RAPAC) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and aimed at presenting for technical validation the guides, which had been previously discussed and approved at national level by the Congo Basin countries.


In line with its relevance, close to forty people, representing forestry and wildlife agencies, and the National COMIFAC Coordinations of the following countries: Cameroon, Congo, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Sao Tome and Principe and Chad: and organizations in the likes of COMIFAC, RAPAC, CARPE, USFS, IUCN, WCS. FAO, GEF, the World Bank, USAID, TRIDOM, PACEBCo, Afrique Environnement Plus, attended the meeting.


The gathering which was facilitated by Dr André TOHAM from USFS unfolded in four main stages.


The opening ceremony



Three speeches were delivered for the occasion by:

♦ Dr Sébastien KAMGA KAMDEM, the Representative of RAPAC’s Executive Secretary,

♦ His Excellency Raymond MBITIKON, COMIFAC Executive Secretary

♦ Mr Dénis KOULAGNA KOUTOU, the Secretary General of the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife of Cameroon.


The speakers all pointed out that these Guides had been developed at a time when the degradation of natural resources ranks as one of the key concerns of Central African countries, due to the lack of an adequate planning tool for natural resource management and that the findings of the workshop would help to substantially advance natural resource management in the Congo Basin.


Plenary session



This session revolved around experts’ presentations and ensuing discussions on the following themes:

♦ Presentation of Land use planning and management concepts in Central Africa, by Dr  André TOHAM

♦ Examples of practical applications of the land use planning and management Guides for the development of strategic action plan for conservation and resilience to to  climate change in West Africa, by M. Nicodème TCHAMOU from USFS

♦ Examples of practical applications and adaptation of the land use planning Guides for the development of management plans– Gabon Case study, by André TOHAM



Presentation of the Guide to Integrated Landscape Land Use Planning in Central Africa, by Mr Nicodème TCHAMOU

♦ Presentation of the Guide to Protected Area Management Planning in Central Africa, by Mr Sébastien KAMGA from RAPAC

♦ Presentation of the Guide to Community-Based Natural Resource Management Planning in Central Africa(CBNRM), by Joseph TIEBOU from RAPAC

♦ Presentation of the Guide to Extractive Resource Zone Planning in Central Africa: by Joseph TIEBOU


Group work and feedback in plenary session


The break-out groups aimed to (i) check whether the Guides reflect discussions previously held at national level; (ii) incorporate Gabon’s comments into Guides; (iii) propose amendments to these Guides.

After two (02) days of work, the participants validated the four land use planning and management Guides subject to amendments to be taken into account into to these manuals.

Regarding the adoption of Guides by the COMIFAC council of Ministers, the participants recommended the submission of these planning guides to the COMIFAC Executive Secretariat which shall bring them to the attention of the Council of Ministers of COMIFAC.


End of deliberations


The statement of the Secretary General of the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife which came to close this workshop provided a glimpse of the participants’ satisfaction and their desire to see these Guides approved by the Ministers of COMIFAC and implemented in the Congo Basin.


Please download the Final Communiqué of the Workshop:

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