In 2016 AWARD started work with communities and LEDET (the management authority) to support both the development of new co-management governance structures of these high priority biodiversity areas and to contribute to the livelihoods of community members through the development of various beneficiation mechanisms.
A new co-management agreement is being discussed between LEDET and the communities with claims in Legalameetse (land-owners). AWARD was approached to assist the Legalameetse Management Committee to ensure a tenable, equitable, transparent co-management process is followed so as to ensure sustainable natural resource management and community beneficiation.
The objective of our work is to support the development of functional, tenable and appropriate institutional arrangements for, and subsequent implementation of, co-management that takes into account
(a) sustainable biodiversity and natural resource management, and
(b) meaningful, equitable and sustainable beneficiation of community members under current and future scenarios.
Brief history of the co-management process
A co-management agreement was signed by LEDET and the Legalameetse communities through the Legalameetse Management Committee (LMC) in 2007. This was based on the full lease model of co-management in which communities get a lease fee (per hectare per year) but with little or no involvement in the management and decision-making of the reserve. Each community is expected to form a legal entity called a Communal Property Association (CPA) to administer activities of the claimants/ beneficiaries [The Communal Property Association Act No. 28 of 1996 (CPA)]. Only two communities (Mangena and Mamashiana) had completed their land claim process and CPA registration which enables them to receive the lease fees.
A new co-management agreement is currently being negotiated for part lease, part management. AWARD was approached to assist the Legalameetse Management Committee to ensure a tenable, equitable, transparent co-management process is followed so as to ensure sustainable natural resource management and community beneficiation.