The Right of Access to Food in Cameroon: An Appraisal of the Legal Environment

  • Ngome George Ndiembieh
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  • Ngome George Ndiembieh

    PhD Research Fellow at Department of English Law, Faculty of Laws and Political Science, University of Buea, Cameroon

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The right of access to food has been recognized universally and further domesticated by states in their constitutions and other legislative instruments, Cameroon inclusive. It has been recognized as a fundamental human right whose realisation is dependent on other factors. In spite of these guarantees, the challenge to realise the right to food is overwhelming. For instance, Cameroon is ranked 70th out of 107 countries and has a global hunger index of 19.1. The right to accessing safe food in Cameroon, especially, for the vulnerable and marginalised groups such as women and children remain unrealised. Thus, this thesis seeks to critically appraise the effectiveness of the regulatory, institutional and policy measures put in place for the realization of the right of access to food universally and Cameroon in particular. To achieve the goal of this study, the research adopts a qualitative research methodology with the content analysis and interpretation of primary and secondary data. The study equally employs some empirical methods such as unstructured interviews and observation of the food situation and availability in some parts of Cameroon. In the course of this study, findings revealed that in spite of the strides to ensure access to food for all, certain implementation problems still persist. First, there are instances of corruption, exclusion, and discrimination in the implementation of the program. The lack of transparency is also manifest in the implementation of the program and lack of reliable official data. The study concludes that the right to adequate food is realized when every man, woman and child, alone or in community with others, has physical and economic access at all times to adequate food or means of its procurement.” It is, thus, apparent that the realization of the right to adequate food is primarily dependent upon everyone having sustainable access to productive resources such as land or work. In Cameroon it is clear that not everybody does have access to adequate food. Based on the findings above, the study recommends that the government should make food programs legal entitlements and not just policy options and that public interest litigation or what is known as strategic litigation in the area of food should be heightened and promoted if Cameroon must strive to attain universal access to food.




International Journal of Law Management and Humanities, Volume 7, Issue 1, Page 25 - 48


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