The Management and Challenges of Protected Areas and the Sustenance of Local Livelihoods in Cameroon

Cornelius Mbifung Lambi, Jude Ndzifon Kimengsi, Cordelia Givencheh Kometa, Emmanuel Sunjo Tata


The popular word en vogue today as far as the management of protected areas is concerned is the call to include local participation' and `community development' as part of a comprehensive strategy for biodiversity protection. While much paper work has been done in the form of laid downs laws and policies, decrees have been signed on the issue of creating and managing protected areas in Cameroon for posterity, it is a hard truth that little implementation and enabling environments have been created to make protected areas in Cameroon sustainable. This paper argues that there is a need to move away from the paper work and rhetoric of “providing alternative means of survival to adjacent populations” by making this option a reality. In this context, we suggest the need for applicable and realistic laws and the effective application of these laws and the creation of an enabling environment which will gradually, without violence or intimidation, make the adjacent populations of protected areas (PAs) to evacuate the areas encroached upon and also actively take part in the process of conserving the PAs. In addition, the paper suggests the need for context-specific economic opportunities which conform with the socio-economic and cultural realities of the communities in question.

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Environment and Natural Resources Research   ISSN 1927-0488 (Print)   ISSN 1927-0496 (Online)

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