GVL Lays Off Nearly 450 Workers

BUTAW, SINOE COUNTY – Four hundred and forty-three workers have been laid off at Golden Veroleum Liberia, more than 10 percent of its workforce, the company said on Saturday. “[They are] due to the downturn of the global economy due to the coronavirus and the constant drop in the price of oil palm on the world…

More Cases of Multiple Sales of Land Despite Law

PIPELINE – In 2009,Jimmy Dasaw’s plan to expand Kiddies College was underway when he purchased three acres of land for US$2,600 in Pipeline, Paynesville from Johnny Hill, the administrator of Tarsue Gbazue Estate in Johnsonville. That dream for his elementary school eventually turned into nightmare.   Five years after purchasing the land, in 2014, Dasaw found himself…

Communities Use New App to Track Illegal Logging

SALAYEA, Lofa County – Rural towns and villages are now using ForestLink, a new app, to track illicit forest operations and deforestation across Liberia, including illegal logging and mining, and poaching in their communities. The tool also makes it possible for them to store and share information on mobile phones in a short period of time from…

Nimba Clans Square Off Over Customary Land Title Claims

TAPPITA DISTRICT, Nimba County – This disarmingly peaceful forest area in Liberia’s far north Tappita District has been the scene of conflict of one form or another for decades. But since 2014 it had enjoyed some peace as two clans here, supported by a US-backed project known by the acronym PROSPER, agreed on a boundary line…

Land Title Authorities Overwhelmed By Disputes

GBONYEA, Bong County – Emmanuel Tokpah always wanted a home of his own. The 27-year-old bike rider had saved enough money to begin construction on a house in this village. But his dreams were shattered in July 2016 when a group of men from neighboring Gbonata came and ordered him to stop work.  The men claimed…

River Cess the Latest Flashpoint in Clashing Laws over Land

VONDEH TOWN, River Cess – The people of this area celebrated in 2019 when a forestry company began operations here. The five-year Social Agreement signed with the company, African Wood and Lumber, an Italian-owned company, was supposed to deliver the community US$5,000 each year in scholarship funds, US$15,000 in land rental fees, two feeder roads,…

Call for Applicants: Land Rights and Climate Change Reporting Project

New Narratives, a non-governmental organisation that has been driving improvements in Liberia’s media sector for 11 years will run a 15-month project that supports Liberian journalists and news organisations to cover issues related to land, water and natural resources rights including those related to climate change. Support for the project will come from the Foreign,…

Bea Mountain Shifting to Underground Mining amid Environmental Concerns

KINJOR, GRAND CAPE COUNTY – Musu Konneh recalls she became speechless for several minutes when she heard that Bea Mountain Mining Corporation intends to start underground mining for gold by 2022 in a stakeholder consultation conducted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Konneh’s clan was one of 322 families who relocated from their ancestral villages…

Liberia on Verge of Delisting from Global Extractives Transparency Body Risking further Blow to Economy

Monrovia – Liberia risks being delisted from the Extractives Industries Transparency Initiative, the global body which monitors transparency in oil and mining industries, in a move that will likely deal another blow to the shaky economy. Liberia will be delisted if it doesn’t meet a deadline set for December 31 to file overdue reports according to…

Illicit Miners Invade Gola Forest Nat’l Park

FORNOR/MANO RIVER KONGO GRAND CAPE MOUNT COUNTY – Illicit miners have invaded the Gola Forest National Park, extracting gold and diamonds from one of Liberia’s five protected areas and smuggling them across the border to Sierra Leone, local authorities say. Gola Forest National Park cuts across Sierra Leone and Liberia. Residents of Porkpa District, Grand…

Miners Drive River Cess Fishing Town into Poverty

WESSEH TOWN, River Cess – Fifty-two-year-old Churchemah Wesseh says her grandson died from malaria last year because she could not afford to pay the hospital bills in time. A fisherwoman for more than 30 years, the single mother of six hardly makes ends meet these days. Her catch has declined, and the little money she…

Land Dispute Driving Villages into Poverty in Lofa

MamadeeKelledue, Lofa County – Fatuma Kamara, turned to gardening, planting plantains, cassavas and bananas after her husband died more than three decades ago. Her garden prospered. Proceeds from the garden did not only feed her family but left her with enough money to save and pay her children’s tuition. It seemed her dream of becoming one…

County Authorities Fight Community over Logging Deal in Bassa

Residents of District #3B&C in Grand Bassa County on a sunny day in July 2018 gathered in their numbers to celebrate the presentation of an official certificate from the Forestry Development Authority (FDA) that gives them the right to manage their forest. They slaughtered a cow, had a big feast and partied all nightlong. That…

Liberia: Foya Fights to Prevent Yearly Forest Fire

KPANDU, LOFA COUNTY – Andrew Saah Kendema expected a big harvest, not the big fire that swept through his farm and thousands of acres of forest land in the Foya Tengia District of Lofa County in March this year.  His sugarcane farm would have fetched him about 20 drums of liquor, enough returns on a US$10,000…

Liberia: Denied for Decades, Women Lead Land Rights Campaign in Bong

GOKAI TOWN, BONG COUNTY – Gormah Mulbah and her five children were thrown out of their home last year after her husband died. Her late husband’s family was angry she refused to marry his younger brother. While she thought all hope was lost, a man—whose identify she would not reveal over reprisal—confronted her in-laws over the…