After 12 years with LEI, one of the founders of the company, Chris Lunnay, is retiring from full time employment with LEI.
Throughout Chris’ career in both the Australian Public Service (South Australian Survey Department) and then in the private sector for international projects, he has maintained excellent relationships with staff and advisers through his level-headed and meticulously hard-working approach and commitment to his tasks. Over the years at LEI, he has provided invaluable contributions to the company in various roles as a Team Leader, technical advisor, business development manager and mentor. As Team Leader, he played an integral role in the success of long term efforts on land administration projects in Indonesia, Lao PDR, Lesotho and most recently Vanuatu. His steady hand, clear communication style, and approachable manner will be missed by all who worked closely with him. We wish him all the best in enjoying some well-deserved rest, relaxation and holiday travels.
Chris will be available as an LEI Senior Associate for short term consulting work specialising in land registration, systematic adjudication and regularisation, land surveying and land policy from February 2014.
In the ‘International Year of Family Farming’, LEI with our partner GRET, look forward to commencing the SDC Mekong Region Land Governance Project.
It is opportune timing that in 2014 in the ‘International Year of Family Farming’, LEI with our partner GRET, will be commencing in March, a regional program designed and funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC): the Mekong Region Land Governance Project. As momentum grows globally on the topic of land tenure and food security for family farmers, there is recognition that land governance in Asia, and the Mekong in particular, requires priority attention. The lands and livelihoods of family farmers in the Mekong are under increasing threat from foreign direct investment, resource scarcity, population growth and weak land governance.
In line with the Voluntary Guidelines on the responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests, the SDC project aims to promote stable, transparent, equitable, accountable and efficient land governance policies and practice in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, by empowering various reform actors who carry the voice of family farmers at national and regional level. The project will also create a regional platform to support research, capacity building, knowledge sharing, piloting of innovations, and advocacy for protecting the tenure rights of small holder women and men farmers.
A team of consultants from LEI recently guided the revision of the Strategic Plan for the Implementation of Land Laws (SPILL) (2013), a roadmap for the development of the Land Sector in mainland Tanzania.
After extensive research, review and consultation, a revised Strategic Plan for the Implementation of Land Laws (SPILL) (2013) as a roadmap for the development of the Land Sector in mainland Tanzania has been developed under the guidance of a team of consultants from LEI. Working closely with the Ministry of Lands, Housing, and Human Settlements Development (MLHHSD), the 2005 strategic plan was reviewed and updated in the light of the commitment of national and land sector leadership to improving land service delivery and transparency.
SPILL has identified priority areas and activities for implementation. It was developed with wide consultation to be a comprehensive vision and action plan, as well as providing prioritisation and sequencing of activities under known constraints and resource challenges. It considers various costings and financing arrangements for sustainable implementation. This extensive piece of work and road map was prepared in consultation with major stakeholders who are instrumental to the successful implementation of SPILL, including MLHHSD, the Regional Administration and Local Government in the Prime Minister’s Office, the Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs, as well as other government, private sector and civil society participants.
The Government is using SPILL as the platform for the design and implementation of a medium (5-year) to a long (10-year) term sectorial programme to enable the completion of the ongoing initiatives, to scale up recent pilot projects and take advantage of the newly established geodetic network and the coming Integrated Land Information Management System. The successful implementation of SPILL will ensure that land is best used to support the current and future social, economic and environmental development of the country.
A recent re-focusing of activities means the project can now better support land administration initiatives identified by the Minister of Lands as being critical to the development of Vanuatu.
Tangible progress has been made over the last 12 months on the Vanuatu Land Program, largely as a result of the support provided by the new Minister for Lands. A recent re-focusing of activities means the project can now better support land administration initiatives identified by the Minister of Lands as being critical to the development of Vanuatu. The Program will focus on supporting land administration activities which will also support future infrastructure development around Port Vila and Luganville as well as other economic development initiatives across the country through the provision of improved land administration practice and procedures in the areas of land registration, surveying and valuation.
By way of practical examples: with the Program support, the Department of Lands have removed a backlog of unregistered instruments (in excess of 6,000) and almost completed the updating of the Lease Registers. This has required the reprinting of in excess of 10,500 Lease Registers and the manual checking of all existing Lease Registers that are on file. This significant achievement will improve the transparency of the lease process and significantly reduce the time required to register a new lease.
A Document Tracking System (DTS) has been developed for the Land Registry Office and Document Tracking Systems are also being developed for survey, valuation and planning. The Document Tracking System has helped facilitate a streamlining of registry processes and enables staff and users of the land registry to track the progress of an application, increasing the transparency of the process.
This week new survey equipment arrived to help the government carry out efficient and accurate surveys. As well as procuring the equipment the Program is also providing government survey staff with a week’s intensive training in use of the new equipment. In conjunction with this initiative current cadastral surveying and plan presentation procedures are also being improved. These activities will be particularly valuable in facilitating the significant infrastructure projects planned around Port Vila.