WHY does Lake Tanganyika need a Convention?|
The overall aim of the Lake Tanganyika Biodiversity Project is to develop an effective and sustainable system for managing and conserving the biological diversity of Lake Tanganyika. The LTBP has developed a Strategic Action Programme (SAP) to enable the
Lake to be effectively managed as a whole. However, since the Lake straddles the borders of the four riparian countries, in the long term, co-operative management of the Lake will be dependent on the consent and commitment of each of the four States. The States have recognised that they have a common interest in managing the Lake co-operatively and that there is a need to establish an appropriate legal framework for this. To this end a Convention has been prepared by the LTBP.
WHAT is the Convention?
The Convention is a legal agreement setting out the rights and duties of the four States concerning the Lake. It also establishes institutional structures for co-operative management, management principles and related matters. Once it enters into force, following
signature and ratification by the riparian States, it will bind them to co-operate in taking a range of measures designed to protect the biodiversity and promote the sustainable development, of the Lake and its environment. It will also commit the States to implementing and regularly revising the SAP and in this way it will provide the legal authority which the SAP will need to be effective and sustainable. The Convention is particularly significant as it is one of the few examples of a regional agreement designed to achieve the conservation and sustainable use of a unique shared resource.
WHO has developed the document?
During the course of LTBP, a series of regional workshops brought together senior lawyers and policy makers from each of the four riparian countries. The first of these workshops (Lusaka, 25th -27th February 1998; see Fig. 1) produced a set of recommendations that included detailed instructions so that the nominated drafting team could produce the first draft of the Convention. This workshop agreed the process by which the Convention would be drafted,
discussed and modified, and proposed to the Steering Committee as a document for submission to each government.
The draft was discussed, clause by clause at three further workshops. The first two brought together those participants sharing a common language, i.e. an Anglophone workshop (Dar, 24- 27th August, 1999) and a Francophone workshop (Arusha, 30th August - 3rd September 1999). The final meeting held under LTBP was a regional gathering and resulted in version 4 of the draft being agreed (Arusha, 1st to 5th of November, 1999). This draft was finally adopted by the Steering Committee and forwarded together with various comments, to each government for further negotiation and eventual agreement. The following table indicates the process of developing the Convention.
|En ||Convention for the Sustainable Management of Lake Tanganyika. 2003. (FINAL) 29p. - [340K]|
|En ||Draft Convention for the Sustainable Management of Lake Tanganyika. 1999. v.4.0. 31p. - [122K]|
|En ||Table of Legal Workshop Participants. 1998. 1p. - [22K]|