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‘Majority of women in Vea c’nities lack access to irrigated land’

Majority of women in the Vea Irrigation project communities of the Upper East Region do not have equal opportunity to access to irrigated land for farming, especially during the dry seasons, a research has revealed.

The Ae-ebise Women Association (ABIWA) conducted the research with technical and funding support from the Business Sector Advocacy Challenge (BUSAC) Fund and its donors, Danish International Development Agency (DANIDA), United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the European Union (EU).

The research attributed the phenomenon to the land tenure system of the traditional area, and mentioned that the Vea Irrigation project covers Vea, Gowrie, Zaare, Yikine, Yorogo, Sumbrugu and Nyariga communities.

The focal person of the research group, Mr Patrick Anamoo, disseminated the findings at a sensitisation forum, at Gowrie, in the Bongo District.

He   explained that the study sought to understand how women could access irrigated land in the Vea Irrigation Project area, considering the fact that the patrilineal customary system is being practised in the area.

Mr Anamoo said that ABIWA, which was formed to promote gender equality and equity in the Bongo District of the region was assisting more than 378 women engaging in dry season farming, animal rearing and petty trading.

The research pointed out that customary practices relating to ownership, inheritance and sacrifices to the ancestral land gods were stumbling blocks to women’s access to irrigated land in the Vea Irrigation project area.

The study disclosed that men, inherit land and properties, which affect women’s access to land.

 Also, whilst the research indicated that 86 per cent of the women in the area did not know anything about land rights, and that some women were of the view that traditionally they do not have the right to own land.

According to some of the opinion leaders, women were not part of the family because they married the women from different families, and they just had to help their husbands in economic activities.

FROM SAMUEL AKAPULE, VEA

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