Monday, April 15 at 2:00PM
U.S. CONGRESS: Rayburn House Office Building
(45 Independence Avenue SW, Washington, DC)
Land grabbing is becoming the single most combative issue in Africa. It involves large-scale land acquisitions by foreign countries and corporations for farming, biofuels, logging and minerals. Unlike land acquisitions in the United States and Europe where purchasers pay the fair market values for land, in Africa unscrupulous deals are displacing thousands of farmers and leaving local communities in abject poverty, while government officials benefit from land sales and leases.
Ms. Terrier is Co-Founder and Executive Director of Partnership League for Africa’s Development (PLAD). PLAD was created to focus on education, health, land-rights and agriculture as the cornerstone to address the human rights problem in Africa. Educated as an economist she is becoming a leading female voice for Africa’s development and governance.
DR. GEORGE AYITTEY
Dr. Ayittey is a distinguished Economist and Professor at the American University, Washington, DC. He is the founder and chair of the Free Africa Foundation and an associate scholar at the Foreign Policy Research Institute. Dr. Ayittey has championed the argument that: Africa is poor because she is not free, that the primary cause of African poverty is less a result of the oppression and mismanagement by colonial powers, but rather a result of modern oppressive native autocrats.
Mr. Metho is Executive Director of the SMNE (www.solidaritymovement.org), a social justice movement of diverse Ethiopians that joint-sponsored with the think tank, Oakland Institute, to produce the Ethiopian portion of the comprehensive investigative report, Understanding Land Investment Deals in Africa, published in June 2011. Mr. Obang is a human rights activist who tirelessly advocates for human rights, justice, freedom and environment, enhanced accountability in politics and peace in Africa for over 10 years.
Mr. Jacobson works on land grab issues in Africa as a Team Leader for International Forest Policy and Environmental Governance for Global Witness.
MODERATOR: GREGORY SIMPKINS
Mr. Simpkins is an Africa Expert and Senior Advisor, to Congressman Chris Smith the Chairman of the U.S. House Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations.
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