EGI Reorganises VFMCs around FMU 11-005
The participatory or collaborative management approach has been widely recognised as one of the most successful approaches in natural resources management. In Cameroon, Law No. 94/01 of 20 January 1994 on forestry and wildlife prescribes the involvement of local communities in the sustainable management of the national forest estate. More specifically, Ministerial Decision No. 135/D/MINEF/CAB of 26 November 1999 establishing the procedures for the classification of forests in the permanent forest areas of the Republic of Cameroon provides for the establishment of Village Forest Management Committees (VFMC), as a local institution charged with representing local populations in all issues concerning the management of forests.
In the context of forest exploitation by commercial logging companies, VFMCs act as a community intermediary with the logging company as well as the Ministry of Forestry and Wildlife, and other stakeholders.
In Eyumojock Sud-division of the Southwest Region, the Forest Management Unit (FMU) 11005 is managed by CAFECO SA., an affiliate of the WIJMA Group. Some 26 village communities are located in and around the CAFECO concession, which the company has pledged to manage in a sustainable manner.
With support from the WWF/Global Forest and Trade Network (GFTN), EGI was called upon to facilitate the re-organization process in all 26 villages.
The overall objective of the activity was to re-organise and install the VFMCs of 26 villages in and around FMU 11-005, in Eyumojock Sub-division of Manyu Division, which CAFECO SA./WIJMA manages.
The following actions were undertaken:
• Facilitation of a stakeholder consultation (local communities, out-going VFMC members, local administration, and concession holder) to initiate the process of re-organisation of the 26 VFMCs in Eyumojock Sub-division.
• Facilitation and supervision of elections of VFMC members in the 26 riparian villages of FMU-11005 while respecting legal norms and procedures in force.
• Facilitation of the installation of the newly elected VFMC members while recalling the core mission of the VFMC.