20061012

 

Planning guidelines

*Key recommendations. Excerpt from "Forest peoples in the central African rain forest: focus on the pygmies" Adapted by S.A. Dembner.

"...Pygmies should be assured equal rights as full citizens of the state and assured equal access to services offered to other citizens. As governments take action to rectify violations of such basic human rights, they must take care not to seek justification for resettlement, sedentarization or other mechanisms for forced acculturation. For any development project, the relevant forest-dwelling people should be an integral and early part of the planning process. To increase forest people's input into development planning, local people's representatives (not necessarily 'elite' members) should be asked to participate in the early stages ot' project planning, and planners and consultants who know either the local tribal language or the regional dialects should be sought. In the forest areas of central Africa, tourism is only just beginning, but it is sure to grow with the creation of national parks and the growing popularity of eco and ethnotourism in the developed countries. If forest dwellers are made part of the formation of tourism strategies (rather than manipulated by those seeking profits), tourism can enhance cultural awareness and the knowledge of ethnic history while avoiding the people in a zoo' phenomenon. The participation of indigenous people will he crucial for maintaining the region's cultural and environmental integrity."

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