Indonesia

Indonesia: First round of joint land titling certificates issued in Aceh

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Banda Aceh, 28 December 2006 - BPN Aceh Besar Land Office today issued the first joint land certificates for residents of Meunasah Bak'u village in Leupung as part of the Joint Land Titling (JLT) Program that was initiated by BPN and Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Executing Agency (BRR) for NAD-Nias.

The JLT Program guarantees the right of land ownership to both men and women (either husbands and wives or siblings) for those living in relocation areas on land purchased by BRR or the local government in Aceh. The 58 land certificates issued today name both the husband and wife or the brother and sister as equal land owners. The JLT Program was developed and approved by BRR, BPN and the Mahkamah Syari'ah.

"The Joint Land Titling Program is aligned with BPN's central program and is in accordance with Indonesian, Adat and Syari'ah law," said Head of BPN Regional Office for NAD Ir Razali Yahya. "The BPN supports this program because it creates equality for women and men in land ownership and provides the foundation for sustainable economic development of Aceh."

The 58 certificates issued today in Meunasah Bak'u are just the first and land owners in other relocation areas around the province will receive similar certificates soon. Eventually, 35.000 people in relocation areas in 14 districts will benefit from the program.

BRR and BPN are working with local and international agencies, women's group as well as local leaders, to educate communities about the program. Next year, these partners will conduct a comprehensive outreach program that includes holding community meetings and distributing informational materials. These partners will also take on the important role of facilitating the communication between the BRR and BPN and the communities.

"The Government of Indonesia must be congratulated by all national and International partners involved in the recovery process for the launch of the joint land titling policy and issuance of first joint land certificates in Aceh" said Ian Small, Senior Programme Manager,Oxfam Aceh and Nias. He explained BRR, BPN joint initiative paves the way not only for sustainable recovery; it also guarantees the protection and legal empowerment of the most vulnerable, as well as the social and economic development of the future generations. This is truly a shining example of building back better"

BRR is committed to supporting the program as it's implemented by BPN, Mahkamah Syari'ah" said BRR Director Dr. Kuntoro Mangkusubroto. "Through these coordinated efforts, we will help create a success story where women continue to play an important role in creating a vital, robust, forward-looking Aceh."