The State of Panama violated the land rights of indigenous communities impacted by the construction of the Bayano dam and failed to provide adequate judicial protection for the communities to protect their ancestral lands. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights directed the State of Panama to, among other things, demarcate community lands and pay compensation.
Court nullified 99-year agricultural lease awarded to oil palm developer. The Minister for Lands failed to obtain proper consent from customary landowners and neglected to conduct adequate consultation prior to issuing the lease.
The Supreme Court of Canada declared that the Tsilhqot’in Nation established title to 1,750 square kilometres of land including areas that are used for hunting, fishing, trapping, foraging and other cultural purposes or practices. The Court declared Aboriginal title holders have the “right to the benefits associated with the land – to use it, enjoy it and profit from its economic development” such that “the Crown does not retain a beneficial interest in Aboriginal title land.”
The government of Uganda violated constitutional rights when it failed to pay prompt and prior compensation to landowner before expropriating land for road construction. The Land Acquisition Act must be read in conformity with the constitution, which protects the right to be compensated before land may be acquired in the public interest. The Court also established rules on the award of costs in public interest litigation.
The Government of Belize violated Maya community members’ constitutional right to protection of the law by failing to ensure that the existing land law system recognized and protected Maya land rights.