Target: World Bank President Jim Kim
Goal: Take decisive action on land grabs in the developing world
Right now, companies from the rich world are buying up huge swathes of land in poor countries worldwide, especially Africa. These land deals often leave local people on the land with no way to grow food or support themselves. Frequently, they were not even consulted about the land deal. The World Bank, the world’s foremost lending institution, whose mission is poverty reduction, finances some of these deals. The World Bank must cease investing in such land deals.
These land deals, dubbed “land grabs,” are often conducted between governments and large companies, with little to no consultation or consent from the poor people who actually live on the land. Often, because legal title to land in poor countries is murky, the people are simply evicted from the land and left to fend for themselves.
Land grabs are hurting the lives and livelihoods of poor people all over the world. But the World Bank continues to finance some of the deals, tacitly giving support to these unjust practices, despite the fact that the Bank’s mission is to reduce poverty for the very same people these land grabs are affecting. International humanitarian organizations, notably Oxfam, have been pressuring the World Bank to examine these policies and have received a limited response, but the World Bank has yet to take decisive action and cease funding predatory land grabs.
By signing the petition below, you will voice your opposition to the World Bank’s support of land grab deals in Africa and elsewhere, and ask them to cease funding for such deals worldwide.
Dear World Bank President Jim Kim,
Land deals across Africa and the developing world are forcing poor people off their land and out of their livelihoods, with little to no way to survive, and without consultation. Large companies have now purchased land that could feed one billion people annually. And yet the World Bank, tasked with reducing poverty worldwide, funds many of these predatory deals.
Oxfam and other organizations have voiced their opposition to your funding of such land grabs, and I would like to add my voice to theirs. Please freeze investment in land deals such as these and help correct the injustices that are befalling poor farmers worldwide even as you read this message. The World Bank is uniquely positioned to influence policy on this issue, so please do the right thing.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: CGIAR Climate