Development of a Participatory
Forest Management Plan for
Customary and State Forest Areas
A Guide for Frontline Staff
Version 1 – Oct 2007
For the this process the following applies;
Woody Products are timber, poles and firewood,
Non-Woody products are any products sourced from the forest not included above.
This guide has been developed to support frontline staff through the process of
developing a Participatory Forest Management Plan for state and customary forest
land. It covers the whole process from preparation through to monitoring
implementation activities. Within this guide there are, also, examples of product
use plans and an overall management plan which will help support the user of this
document in formulating final plans.
Within this guide there is also a section on area based harvesting. Utilising an area
based harvesting system is the simplest and most effective form of management
for the Miombo woodland that covers most of Malawi. When communities want to
harvest woody products they should plan their harvesting regimes using this
The guide has been developed as a result of a review process to analyse the
existing resource assessment process (Participatory Forest Management Planning;
Field Manual Version 2.1). The review process looked at how the present
Participatory Resource Assessment Process was being undertaken and the data
collected used. It was found that the process was too long and the data collected
was not being used in the development of management plans. This was especially
so in the identification of management regimes for utilisation of woody products.
The review was undertaken by members of the Forest Department with support
from the Improved Forest Management for Sustainable Livelihoods Programme
Technical Assistance Team (LTSI).
Although the review looked at the PFRA process, it is not possible to write a guide
on the reviewed resource assessment process without incorporating all aspects of
management plan development. Also, the reviewed resource assessment process
meant that it was required to change the management plan format slightly in order
that information collected could easily be integrated into the plan. Hence, this
document covers all aspects of management plan development.
The “new” PFRA process focuses on extracting information from the community on
existing use, rules, harvesting practices, problems, and supply and demand for
products against species availability. The process has been shortened greatly
requiring less inputs, and is supported by the introduction of area based harvesting
regimes when woody products are to be utilised. The key to the reviewed process
is the utilisation of community knowledge extracted through a more informal
approach during forest transect walks. Using the transect walk and community
discussions allows a “data base” of knowledge and information to be generated.
This knowledge requires good observation and questioning skills of the facilitators
(front line staff). Once the plan is implemented there is a strong emphasis on
monitoring and learning from activities.
This guide is divided into 3 main sections; the process of management plan
development (including the reviewed resource assessment process), a section on
the methodology for area based harvesting and the last section which gives some
examples of management plans and product use plans.
The Reviewed Resource Assessment Process
It was found that the existing PFRA process was draining resources (human and
financial) for an output that had little relation to the information that was collected –
the management plans were not incorporating information generated through
PFRA. Therefore, an FD team were assigned the task of reviewing the process and
developing a more streamlined process that generated information to be used in
the development of a management plan.
The review process was in 3 parts. Firstly, the team held a workshop that
discussed the issues with the existing PFRA and then undertook a field exercise to
compare plans developed through the “old” process and a short more visual
process (see PFRA Workshop Report – Aug 07). Next the revised assessment
process was field tested and management plans for different tenurial arrangements
– customary and state land - developed. The final part was to review the plans and
process further and any revisions made – these were presented process to a core
team of forestry planners at FD Headquarters.
The following table highlights how the 2 process vary in their methodology and
The Revised Resource Assessment Process The existing PFRA Process
The forest walk enables more varied and richer information The information captured from sample plots may not take
to be collected – uses/issues in specific areas. into account area specific activities and uses.
Captures a lot of species (some species are localized). Some species may be missed due to sample plot
Front line staff need less training to use this method with the Training is intensive - introducing many new concepts to
focus being on observation and questioning techniques. frontline staff that they have difficulty using.
No measurements involved. A lot of measurements hence confusing to communities.
Communities are comfortable with classification by use. Diameter classes confusing to both villagers and front line
No need for serious computations and less paper work. A lot of computations, calculations and graphs.
Less time (2-3 days) and less costly. More time (2-3 weeks) and more costly.
Full participation of communities which leads to them being Less participation in mathematical calculations (mostly
more confident in developing a management plan. depends on the use of school leavers) and difficult relating
this to management plan development.
Management options discussed in the forest. Management options only discussed against the complicated
graphs and done outside the forest through recall.
Implementation activities can be more focused and site Implementation activities may be too general.
Harvesting of products relies on an area based harvesting Harvesting of products becomes to general which needs
system (coupes) which is easy to plan, implement and very specific skills for planning and once implemented it is
monitor. difficult to monitor.
Management plan development does not stand alone as an activity. It is important
to consult other documents during this process so links are made with previous
analysis & data, the existing legal framework, and implementation guides. Below
are some of the key documents that will support the process of management plan
Standards and Guidelines for Participatory Outlines the steps required for the PFM
Forestry in Malawi process and details the standards to be met
for any PFM intervention.
Sustainable Livelihood Analysis (SLA) for Guide to identifying appropriate institutions,
Participatory Forest Management (draft) analysing relevance of forest resources and
appropriate interventions, identifying
livelihood activities and relevance to forest
resources and the development of a
livelihood action plan.
Guide to the Registration of Local Forest Outlines the steps required to register an
Organisation LFO and clarifies their rights and
responsibilities within the existing legal
Strategic Forest Area Plan Each Forest Reserve and it‟s surrounding
area should have a SFA Plan. This should
be consulted during management plan
development to ensure any interventions
are within the implementation guide laid out
in the SFA Plan.
A Guide to Promoting Community Fire A key document to support the utilisation of
Management this much under rated management tool.
All the above are Government of Malawi
documents (with the exception of SFA
The PFM Process and Management Plan Development
The development of a Generic Process for 1. Determine local planning & strategic
participatory forest management Setting
priorities (District profiles & plans)
2. Identify broad stakeholder groups &
form partnerships (NGOs, Traditional
plan for customary and state land strategic goals &
3. Negotiate roles, responsibilities &
is a combination of steps outlined accountability
in the Standards and Guidelines
for Participatory Forestry in Performance People
Malawi. monitoring &
Steps 1 & 2 (see table 1. Assess impact, equity, achievement
1. Build awareness & consensus of key
local stakeholders, interest groups &
of outcomes & performance against
below) are covered under standards
2.Facilitate participatory action learning
functional community institutions
2. Identify needs, priorities and
Implementing opportunities (livelihoods, IGAs),
institutional building, 3. Review & revision of plans,
constitutions & service agreements
practical actions for
3. Assess resource availability, user rights
4. Communicate learning
strengthening, and & livelihoods 4. Negotiate roles, responsibilities,
accountability, benefit sharing & conflict
prioritising actions (Stage 2) 5. Identify & form appropriate locally
accountable institution (VNRMC/Block
Steps 3, 4 & 5 are covered committees, forest user groups, clubs)
under implementing Processes & Approaches
practical actions for - Forest Management Agreements
- Co-management Agreements Management
- Community management of customary
- Co-management of State Forest
sustainable forestry and - Forest Plantation Agreements
- Bylaws (District & community)
- Individual/household tree planting, trees
livelihoods (Stage 3) on farms
- Afforestation (Community & group
Step 6 is covered under
- Community involvement in State
performance monitoring and - Harvesting, processing & marketing forest
learning (Stage 4)
Steps for developing a PFMP
Step Key Activities
1 SLA process (aspects Identify the appropriate managing authority.
that relate to the forest Identify the key areas of interest and use of trees and forest areas.
resource) Identify uses and users of the forest resource.
(See SLA Handbook) Review tenure, rights holders, and boundaries.
Identify key FBEs that are sourced from the forest resource and will link into
the management practices.
2 LFO Registration Develop constitution for appropriate authority including the area of
jurisdiction for management of the forest resource.
Register LFO with the District Forest Office after standard assessment.
3 Resource Assessment
4 Drafting of Management
Plan Details on these steps are covered in this
5 Approval document
Steps 1 and 2 must have been done before developing a PFMP.
Management Plan Development
Before developing a management plan the SFA Plan should be consulted. This will
guide the front line staff and community on implementation. Failure to consult may
result in a PFMP that does not meet the criteria set out in the SFA Plan and
therefore cannot be approved.
The diagram below outlines the process that FLS will undertake with the
community in order to develop a PFMP.
Development of a participatory forest
q Identify core planning groups
q Collate data
q Revisit SLA
Stage 1 q Develop management objectives in relation to
Preparation SFA Plan
q Assess forest management units
q Time for resource assessment
q Plan activities
q Community discussions on key questions
q Forest Transect Walk
q Community discussions on each use
q Decide upon key woody product
q Discussions on resource use rules, roles and
q Draft management plan
q Community Feedback
q Finalisation of management plan
q Legal agreements
q Implement plan
Stage 5 q Undertake PM&E
Participatory M&E q FD and LFMB monitoring of plan/agreement.
Stage 1 - Preparation
Identify Core Planning Groups
After the SLA process one of the activities undertaken will be the registration of the
LFO. Members of this body should be included in the team assigned to
development of the plan plus some representatives from FUGs.
The LFO will have a defined area of jurisdiction and with this body you should
clarify for which area a management plan is to be drawn up.
Once you have decided upon the specific area you need to get all the information
that has been generated with regards to forest management. This will mainly come
from the SLA process but there may be other sources of data from other
organisations working in the area.
Through the SLA process a major step has been taken on developing an
understanding of where key forest areas are, who manages the forest resource
and how it can be managed. Before embarking on the development of a
management plan the community and extension staff should revisit information
generated through the SLA process.
The following are the key tools that have generated information that should now be
used. You should also refer to the action plan to see what types of forestry
interventions are required by the community to support the improvement of their
No Tool Information Analysis Questions (Report Links with other
generated Format) processes
2 Institutional List and details of all Which institutions are related to Formation and registration
profile/mapping institutions in village NR? of appropriate LFO
formal and informal Could any of those institutions
(including forest user act as a VNRMC?
groups) Are there any institutions that
Quality of relationships have use rights over the forest?
and overlap in Which ones/where?
membership of different
3 Village Sketch Land use patterns and Which were the key areas of PFRA/PFMP/Homestead
Map/Transect key features interest and use of trees and /riverine/ woodlot planting
Walk/Village Tenurial patterns and forest areas? Why? plan
Forest and forest boundaries Who are the key rights holders
Tree Land Use Forest condition and and users?
Map uses Which are the key village
features (water sources, agric
land, settlement patterns)
4 Livelihood Exhaustive list of What are the key livelihood FBE screening
activity livelihood activities in activities in the village by
diagram and village and ranking in gender
prioritisation accordance with
number of households
6 Natural List of forest products, What are the priority products PFMP and FBE screening
resource use ranking and source with low supply?
product/ranking What are products with a good
Where are the priority products
Are the priority users
represented in the VNRMC?
7 Trees and List of livelihood (not Which livelihood activities are FBE screening
forest income generating) considered the most
livelihood activities in relation to sustainable and why?
table/Trend number of households Which livelihood activities are
analysis involved considered unsustainable and
Trend graphs for why?
specific issues What are the key issues in this
village to make livelihood
activities more sustainable?
Having revisited this information it should now be clear what the forest resource
that you will be assessing is required for and how it is currently being used and
Develop Management Objectives
Management objectives guide what you want to achieve from the forest resource
and will be guided by the SFA plan. It is possible to have a combination of the
activities below in your objectives – e.g to utilise the resource by harvesting woody
products and non-woody products to allow communities to benefit from the
resource whilst ensuring the long term sustainability of the forest area.
Harvesting of woody products
If woody products are to be harvested then decide on the key product – is
the key product timber, poles or firewood. Once this has been decided you
will then have to generate information to aid decision making for an area
based harvesting regime.
The key woody product will drive the management regime and any other
woody product will be as a consequence of the regime. Therefore, only one
plan is required for harvesting of woody products.
Regeneration for woody products
If no woody products are to be harvested, but wanted in the future, then you
have to decide on key product and develop a plan to show what activities
are required for regeneration of the appropriate species. How will you
encourage and protect for natural regeneration? If planting is required your
nursery requirements should reflect quantities required?
Harvesting of Non-woody products
A plan for each non-woody product should be developed – focusing on
where, when and how each product can be utilised and who can have
access to these resources.
The only consideration here is – how the forest area will be protected, by
whom and penalties for breaking the rules.
Assess Forest Management Units
This is done in conjunction with the development of management objectives.
Certain areas may be set aside for specific objectives. E.g. for a forest area FMU 1
is set aside for soil and water conservation (50m either side of water courses) and
FMU 2 utilised for woody products.
Time Required for Resource Assessment
Once you have decided upon your management objectives you need to assess
how long it will take and the information required from the resource assessment.
The management objectives will determine the length of time needed for
assessment and the quality of information required. Below is a guide to the amount
of time required for the assessment;
Objective Information Time frame
Harvesting of woody products Species, use, supply, demand and other aspects 2-3 days (depending
of utilisation. on forest size)
Regeneration for woody products How the forest can be regenerated in order to 1 day
meet the needs of the community.
Harvesting of Non-woody products This is dependent on the type of Non-woody
Products that are growing within the forest 2 days
(mushrooms, fibres, medicinal plants) may (depending on
need a bit longer to gather information on product and size
species, supply etc. of forest)
Products like honey do not require much time
at all. 1 day
Conservation Protection methods. 1 day
So all community members are aware of what is required of them you should draw
up a timetable of events for preliminary discussions, the forest transect walk and
discussions to develop the management plan.
Stage 2 - The Resource Assessment
This revised process should be undertaken when developing a management plan
on customary or state land for any of the objectives identified in stage 1. It is
undertaken by the community with the support of the FD staff in order to build on
local knowledge. The management plan that will be developed through the
assessment process is for the community to implement, so their understanding of
the resource and management practices should be used and any new practices
discussed during the transect walk or community discussions.
This process relies on visual interpretation of the forest resource and includes 3
main parts; a community discussion, a forest walk and then further community
feedback into developing management practices for identified uses.
Community Discussions on Key Questions
Before undertaking the walk the team should confirm the management objectives
and the boundaries in consultation with the LFO. There should be informal
discussion about the forest using some of the following questions in the box below;
Some key questions to be asked before entering into the forest
Define if the forest is in one piece or in different patches.
What are the different vegetation zones of the forest and in what proportions?
Are there other important sub-divisions of the forest, natural or otherwise?
Are there any special sites in the forest [meeting places, glades, springs, sacred
Link to the maps for each use category
How has the forest changed over the last fifty years? If it is declining in size,
quality and usefulness, what are the causes? Were there springs and streams
in the forest before and if so, what caused their loss? Visit.
What was quality of key species (timber) before degradation took place – use
this to guide the management regimes for each use.
Which areas are most used for grazing, wood extraction, hunting, beekeeping,
mining, pole wood harvesting, etc.?
Which areas are most degraded and why? What is needed to see them
Which areas need most protection and why?
Uses and users
Who uses the forest today? Where do they come from – this village,
neighbouring villages, towns?
Do men and women use the forest in different ways?
Do rich and poor people use the forest in different ways?
Do local people and outsiders use the forest in different ways?
What are all the different uses being made of the forest?
Which uses are most and least damaging?
Which used are confined to specific areas of the forest?
Which uses are new? Since when, and why?
Management (confirmation of SLA process)
Who did the forest belong to originally? Who owns it now?
Are there any rules governing the use of the forest? If these have fallen into
Who could best look after the forest? Why?
If this were your forest fully to manage, how would you manage?
Forest Transect Walk
After these discussions the team should undertake a forest walk. The forest walk
should take 1 or 2 days depending on the size of the resource and the
management objectives that have been set out.
Firstly you should design the transect walk;
Large areas may need 2 or 3 transects, whilst smaller areas only
one transect across the whole area may be necessary. Ensure SMALL AREA that
any key features are covered by the walk. During the walk
issues concerning key forest areas may arise – do not ignore
these, go and visit as they may produce useful
During the walk, for each use, the following should be discussed and any
information generated should be written down on a sheet that includes a map –
there should be 1 sheet for each use of the forest area;
Major problems regards access & availability of resource,
Current management regimes and potential management regimes,
Any existing rules regarding harvesting/use,
Any existing knowledge on harvesting rates
(the list of questions for the previous community discussions can support
you to generate more information)
Once you embark on the transect walks stop and talk to the communities at any
points of interest that you may come across. Ensure that you stop at least every 15
mins for discussions. There may be uses or issues that have not come out of the
previous analysis – e.g why has the bark been stripped from the tree? Cattle dung
shows evidence of grazing – so who grazes livestock here and what
benefits/problems are associated with the grazing?
Stage 3 - Planning
Community Discussions on each use Forest Product
(Woody or Non-woody)
Key species ………………………………
Once you have completed the forest walk it is
now time to sit with the group and develop Demand ………………………………
management practices for each use. You
should have a sheet with information on each
use. Use these to develop management Problems/Issues
practices and resource rules for each use – Management Practices ………………………………
these will then form the basis for the Area Plan
For each use compile the information and
develop a draft plan that will be incorporated
into the overall management plan. Using the
At the end of these discussions you should Allowable quantity per year (area? Quantity) ………………………………
have developed use plans for each specific Who can permits be issued to ………………………………
use. Who can permits be issued to ………………………………
Utilisation of Key Woody Product
At this point you should have compiled enough information to clarify the uses and
potential for each use.
If the community is to utilise woody products this should be finalised now. The
harvesting plan will be based on the key product with other woody products as by
The principles behind area based harvesting are described in the next section.
Other points for Discussion
These will include;
Resource Rules that cover all FMUs and relate to general management of the
forest area e.g. no harvesting of forest products without a permit from the LFO.
Roles and responsibilities – patrolling, fee/fine collection and distribution
An annual activity plan – review meetings, harvesting periods, issuing of annual
licenses, patrols, early burning etc.
Drafting the Management Plan
Before drafting the Management Plan you should consult again with the Strategic
Forest Area Plan. The SFAP has an implementation guide which sets out “rules”
for interventions – where harvesting is allowed protected areas, utilisation on steep
slopes etc. These may affect your management practices and where you are doing
With the community you should draft the following;
Name & Title Name of forest area
Managing Authority LFO for VFA or Block Committee
Roles and responsibilities
Forest Area Description Boundaries including map
Forest information (based on key questions)
Forest Management Units Location of each unit
Management Objectives Overall objective
Management Practices These should cover all the FMUs
General rules if certain activities are forbidden
Plan for each use Repeated for each use.
Only one required for woody products.
This should be presented as below.
Forest Product ………………………………
(Woody or Non-woody)
Key species ………………………………
Management Practices ………………………………
Allowable quantity per year (area? Quantity) ………………………………
Who can permits be issued to ………………………………
Who can permits be issued to ………………………………
Activity Plan What shall be done, when and by who.
Patrolling Plan What shall be done, when and by who.
Monitoring Plan Participatory Monitoring and evaluation of
implementation of the plan
Review of each use plan – recording and
Financial issues Payment of fees and fines (as per LFO
Signatories LFO Chairman
TA or GVH
When woody products are to be harvested for
commercial use the District Forestry Officer
Annexes Timeline of plan development
Records of PFRA
STAGE 4 – Approval
Once the management plan has been drafted then there it must be presented to
the wider community. The management plan controls access to the forest area and
impacts on the livelihoods of the community, therefore, their approval of the plan is
an integral part of approval. The plan should be presented so all members of the
community understand the plan and are able to make comments. At this stage if
any problems are encountered they must be discussed and solutions decided
Tenure and use has a bearing on the type of legal agreement that is required for
approval of the management plan. The management plan can be the legal
mechanism for some uses whilst and agreement has to be entered into for other
uses and tenure arrangements. Different uses and tenure need the following legal
Tenure / use Legal Arrangement
Any type of use or conservation within a Co-management agreement & LFO
state forest reserve Registration
Utilisation of indigenous woody products Forest Management Agreement & LFO
on customary land for trade Registration
Utilisation of indigenous woody products LFO Registration
on customary land for domestic use
Utilisation of non-woody products on LFO Registration
customary land for trade
Utilisation of non-woody products on LFO Registration
customary land for domestic use
Conservation LFO Registration
N.B. For all tenure and use arrangements the LFO can impose penalties and issue
licenses against the PFMP.
For more information consult with the LFO Registration Guide and the Technical
Order for the Regulation of Forest Produce from Customary Land.
Stage 5 – Participatory Monitoring and Evaluation
The aim is to ensure that both community and front line staff are able to assess the
progress and achievements in relation to what has been planned and implemented,
that plans and services are reviewed and revised accordingly, and that this learning
is shared with others.
When assessing the impact of a particular activity or intervention, there is need for
simple, affordable methods, which are easily understood, locally relevant, which
allows self-assessment by both the community and service providers (extension
agents and planners/managers).
When preparing a monitoring plan or strategy, the following should be considered:
Why What is the purpose of the monitoring
What What activity is to be monitored and why is it being
Who Who is involved, who should be involved?
How How is the monitoring to be done, using what
Where Where is the activity taking place, is it appropriate?
When When should the monitoring take place? Is the
activity being monitored on schedule?
What is important is that the process of assessment should involve the appropriate
people, that they are fully involved in measuring their progress against their own
indicators of success, that feedback is provided to others, and that the process is
simple, open and empowering.
Participatory action learning relates to the need for the people who are actively
engaged in forestry activities to be building on their own knowledge and expertise,
to test approaches that are relevant to their particular situation and determine what
works best for them according to their own needs and objectives. It aims to
enhance the capacity of individuals, groups and communities to undertake a
process of self learning and adaptation of processes and approaches which meet
their needs and objectives through testing and innovation.
This can range from selection of species, planting mixtures of species for different
products and services, to treatments in order to encourage natural regeneration of
The use of an area based harvesting system relies very much on utilising
monitoring techniques and using learning from actions. It is important to develop an
understanding of what has happened within each coupe and how that will impact
on future management practices.
METHODOLOGY FOR AREA BASED HARVESTING
Management and harvesting operations have to reflect the capacity of those
involved. Communities have knowledge on tree management and harvesting
practices that needs to be incorporated into prescribed management practices.
However, they are laypersons when it comes to technical aspects of forest
management. Complicated systems and concepts, however basic they may appear
to a trained forester, should not be employed. The key now is to introduce a
regulated system, not a state of the art sustainable system.
Management operations have to be in an appropriate relation with the expected
outputs, both in volume and value. There is a difference between the large scale
outputs from plantation forestry (on suitable sites) and what can be expected from
Miombo woodlands. Hence, management inputs in Miombo woodlands have to be
low input, both in time and means of inputs.
An area based harvesting system is a simple method of harvesting coupes
annually and moving on to the next coupe the following year. After harvesting the
coupe it is then left alone until the rotational period means returning to the initial
coupe. For example, a forest area of 40ha with a rotational period of 20 years for
poles would have 20 blocks of 2 ha harvested annually.
The utilisation of each coupe is dependant on the key priority WOODY
PRODUCT USE – timber, poles, firewood. The key use drives the decision
making and the others are off shoots of that product.
Total clear felling restricts diversification of utilisation and biodiversity, and may
also lead to an increase in soil erosion. Therefore, in order to leave trees to prevent
the above within the harvested area, a coppice with standards system is the best
option for Miombo woodland.
The process involves the following steps – these steps support the development of
the management plan;
Decide upon key woody product
1 o What is the key woody product?
o Timber, poles or firewood
Decide upon rotational period for key species use
o If one species is to be used then rotational period is based on that
2 o Is the forest composition multi species for the key? – use the
o Does the size and demand of the forest area effect rotation?
Calculate the allowable annual harvest area
o Use the rotational period and forest area
3 o Divide total forest area by the rotational period
o If FMUs have been established only calculate for that FMU and not
the whole forest area.
Breakdown the allowable annaul harvest area into
o Maximum size for each coupe is 2ha
Develop management practices for the coupes
o Reserved trees for potential timber, fruit, medicine.
5 o Fire protection to protect regeneration.
o Thinning regime
For each coupe mark out reserved trees
6 o As per harvesting practices determined above
o According to management practices including months when
7 harvesting is allowed
o Licenses issued against management practices and resource rules
Monitor and Learn
o Monitor activities and record.
8 o Learn from implementation and adjust plans and practices
Key woody product and rotational period.
The first stage is to agree on the main product use – this will determine the
rotational period. Is the community preference for firewood, poles or timber?
Once this has been decided upon the rotational period needs to be determined.
Depending on population size, woodland size and expected outputs the rotation
period can vary. General rules are as follows:
Small woodlands in high demand areas are likely to get a shorter rotation, 10-20
o This limits the range of products to smaller sized poles and firewood
but increases total volume harvested over longer time periods.
Larger woodlands could have much longer rotations of 30-40 years which then
provides a wider range of products.
o Using the coppice with standards system allows for a combination of
short and longer rotation.
Although this sounds much like a “glove fits all” scenario it is the best way to utilise
the forest and improve community knowledge of harvesting practices. After a few
years people will be able to see the impact of their operations and adjust their
estimates e.g. if observations do indicate that coppice growth is more vigorous than
anticipated the rotation period can be shortened or vice versa.
The table below gives a guide to the rotational period of specific species and an
average for an area that contains multiple species.
Species Years in rotation Years in rotation Years in rotation
for fuelwood. for poles or for small timber.
Multi species average 6 15 25+
Acacia polyacantha 2-4
Albizzia antunesiana 25+
Bauhenia petersiana 2-3 5-10
Brachystegia spp 5-8 15 25+
Burkea africana 15 25+
Combretum spp. 2-3 12-15 20+
Dalbergia nitidula 5-8 15
Faurea species 5-8 15-20
Julbernardia spp 5-8 10-15 30+
Monotes spp 5-8 25+
Parinari spp. 5-8 8-10 25+
Pericopsis angolensis 8-10 15 30+
Pterocarpus spp 3-5 12-18 25+
Terminali spp. 12-15
Uapaca spp 5-8 15-20
Rotation Periods for some common used Miombo Species
Adapted from J.W. Probyn 1997; Management of Miombo By and For Local Communities. Preliminary Guidelines for Malawi
Factors that may effect rotational period
A dense coupe with mostly undersized trees needs to be opened up. The
suggested off-take is half to three quarters of the standing trees. Often these will be
coppice shoots, with coppiced shoots singling out is better than eliminating all
shoots on the stools. The rotation might be shortened subsequently.
Coupes with an under storey of small desirable trees should be opened up. It is
important to prevent damage to the under storey and afterwards slashing off all
broken undergrowth trees to be done. Rotation period remains unchanged.
For reasons of simplicity a simple coupe method should be followed using the
coppice with standards system. This will assist in controlling operations and record
keeping. Within a coupe trees can be harvested according to the local rules. Some
personal judgement by the LFO is needed to determine what to harvest in a coupe.
The coppice with standards system depends on the rotational period of the key
product to determine the number of coupes. The area is divided into equal sized
coupes by dividing the area size (hectares) by the rotation time.
Key woody product; 20 ha 20 ha 20 ha 20 ha 20 ha
15 years 20 ha 20 ha 20 ha 20 ha 20 ha
Size of forest area;
20 ha 20 ha 20 ha 20 ha 20 ha
Area of annual harvest;
20ha (less area can be considered if
communities wish so) 2ha
To avoid larger clear felling, coupes
should not exceed 2 ha, thus 2ha
coupes will be spread to different 2ha
locations if the annual harvesting 2ha
area exceeds 2 ha e.g. 10 annual
coupe areas of 2 ha each. 2ha 2ha
For creating a map it is easier to select the areas for the first year of coupes and
clearly demarcate them on the ground. Then, in the second year select the second
round of coupes. You can then build a map rather than trying to create one for 20
years! In the above example, plot 10 coupes of 2 ha each and mark on map. Then
in the second year you would add another 10, third year another 10 etc.
Once the coupe size has been determined there is a need to develop management
practices that will be applied to each coupe. These will determine what can/needs
to be done and what is not allowed in each coupe. The following is a guide to
facilitate discussions with the community on what appropriate practices are needed
for the harvesting system considering the types of use.
Standards In each coupe leave a number of trees („standards‟) to allow them to
grow into larger sizes and support other uses e.g timber, fruits, medicinal
Around 25 trees per ha, one tree every 20m, is a good minimum
The maximum could be 200 trees, one tree every 7m, which is almost
fully stocked with larger trees.
Timber Standards If timber trees are to be harvested they should be reserved and included
in the trees above.
A minimum size should be included in the Management Practices and
timber trees below this size should not be harvested.
These reserved trees can be harvested in the next rotation
Coupe fire Freshly felled coupes are protected from fire for the first 3-5 years.
Thinning Thinning is carried out after 7-10 years, or as soon as the coupe appears
Tree density is reduced by about one third up to half.
Thinning material is used for bark ropes, small poles and firewood.
Records of the thinning must be kept.
Cutting Tree harvesting should take place in the dry season, best between May
and August, when trees are dormant. This depends much on regional
All trees should be cut close to the ground.
Planting Planting of Miombo trees and especially enrichment planting in Miombo
has proven to be unsuccessful and costly.
This should strictly be limited to environments related to evergreen forest
types such as wet depressions and along streams.
Regeneration Miombo will generally regenerate by coppicing and root shoots.
Young shoots should be protected from fire for some years.
(Stump mortality rises with the age of trees so in very old un-harvested woodlands coppice re-
growth may not be satisfactory. Root shoots development can be increased by injuring lateral
roots. Hoeing through the coupe in lines of 1m distance would be a possibility. This is time
consuming and should be considered on a case by case basis. Communities may wish to set
up small field trial to experiment with this.)
Early burning Early burning has been identified as the single most effective
management intervention to increase productivity in indigenous
Protected Areas Certain areas in a forest may need to be protected from harvesting
activities altogether. Usually this will be patches adjacent to streams,
shrines, sources of streams, very steep slopes or otherwise special
areas. These areas should be identified before any harvesting plan is
They should have been identified in the development of the SFA Plan, so
referral to this document is vital for approval.
The size of the area can be estimated and is then excluded from the total
Seed trees Miombo regenerates mostly through vegetative means and trees tend to
seed rather early.
A coppice-with-standards system should allow for trees to produce
sufficient seed to support genetic variation.
Fruit Trees Fruit trees are also used for other woody products so should not be
solely reserved as fruit tree species.
Communities should decide on a case by case basis what use they
prefer for a particular species.
Promoting general protection of fruit trees is not necessary
Records should be kept for all coupes. This is the most important aspect for
communities to learn from harvesting the forest. Well kept records of all the
removed wood will, over the years, enable communities to gauge their activities
towards a sustainable off-take.
What is needed are records on each intervention comprising of:
Type of intervention; e.g. thinning, harvesting standards, coppice clearing
Off-take divided in categories; e.g no. of poles, no. of head loads etc.
Total off-take converted to m3
Species records would be desirable
Best practice is to keep a record book for a each forest area with a table for each
coupe. Such records will demonstrate the differences between coupes and, after
some time, effects of interventions.
The yield is compared by using the records with the harvesting and thinning
records before. Positive and negative changes need to be discussed and
conclusions have to be drawn on how to adjust the system.
In case communities or the extension worker are uncomfortable with the suggested
harvesting system, trying out variations on small areas is always an option.
Observing how trial coupes develop after an intervention can help greatly to adjust
to local conditions and expectations.
Examples of use plans
(for a well stocked forest area of 150 ha – species composition is typical Miombo)
N.B. These are for specific uses – the overall management plan will also have rules that apply to
the WHOLE forest area.
Management Plan for beekeeping
Forest Product Honey.
Key species Apis mellifera is preferred pasture specis
Demand High demand to position hives near preferable pasture
Supply All pasture species available but different areas have
better pasture conditions.
Zones 2 and 4 in the map below offer the best
beekeeping pasture available. (Description of zones
using physical features is useful here).
Problems/Issues Variable pasture conditions.
Best pasture available in zones 2 and 4.
Water courses dry up during the dry season.
Management Beehives may only be kept in the forest with a permit.
Only modern beehives may be used – no traditional
beehives should be produced from indigenous species.
Bee hives shall be only kept in zones 2 and 4 as these
are the only suitable areas for honey production.
By having a permit beekeepers must report any
knowledge of illegal activities within the forest area to
the LFO. Failure to do so may result in confiscation of
Allowable Quantities Any honey produced is owned solely by the permit
There are no restrictions on the number of beehives
any individual or group can keep.
Who can permits be Permits will be issued to any group or individual who
issued to has undergone training in beekeeping.
Fees/royalties 100Mk per Beehive shall be paid by the group or
individual to the LFO.
Management Plan for Poles
Forest Product Poles
Key species Bauhenia petersiana, Brachystegia spp., Burkea
africana, Combretum spp., Faurea spp., Julbernardia
spp., Pterocarpus spp., Uapaca spp..
Problems/Issues Over exploitation of species required for poles.
Late fires destroy regenerants.
Management Poles shall be harvested through a coppice with
Practices standards system.
Rotational period shall be 15 years with 10 ha
Poles are of a size 8-15cm in diameter. Any trees
smaller and cut offs shall be used as firewood.
Trees for fruits (Uapaca kirkiana, Parinari curatellifolia)
and medicinal purposes shall not be cut down within
the coupes chosen for harvesting.
Timber trees (Pterocarpus angolensis, Julbernardia
spp.) less than 35cm in diameter shall not be cut in the
coupes chosen for harvesting.
Including trees for fruit, medicine and timber (above 2
points) a total of 75 trees (marked by the LFO) shall
left in each 2 ha coupe.
Harvesting shall take place between the beginning of
March and the end of November.
Each coupe shall be protected from fire for the first 5
years. Early burning shall take place in July clearing a
ring of 20m around each coupe.
After year 5 each coupe shall be subjected to early
burning on a biannual basis
After 8 years each coupe shall be thinned and the
materials used for firewood and small poles.
Allowable Quantities 5 x 2ha coupes shall be harvested annually from
coupes marked in April by the LFO.
The LFO will generate descriptions of the coupes and
produce a map that shall be added to each year
showing which coupes can be harvested.
Each permit allows the removal of 30 poles.
Firewood shall be taken by the headload as available
Location of the first coupes
chosen for harvesting. 1
This map will be up dated in April each
year to show the next coupes for
Who can permits be Any member of the village shall be entitled to obtain a
issued to permit.
A permit shall allow removal of any woody product in
accordance with the resource use rules.
Permits will be equally distributed to households with
records of each permit kept by the LFO to ensure
Commercial users shall have access to permits once
community needs are met. This will be determined
through community feedback meetings.
Fees/royalties Villagers shall pay 30MK per permit.
Commercial users shall pay 50MK per permit.
Management Plan for thatching grass
Forest Product Thatching Grass.
Key species Most grass types used
Problems/Issues Early fires destroy availability of grass.
Conflict with outside villages taking from village land.
Management Thatching grass can be taken from the areas shown in
Practices the Map (TG) (useful to add physical description).
Thatching grass may be taken from the harvested
coupes for the first 5 years until the first early burn.
Collection shall be done in June and July.
Early burning to protect grass areas will take place in
July in those areas outside the designated grass
Permission to collect grass must be obtained from the
LFO who will keep a registry of users. Once
permission is granted any person entering the forest is
shall report any illegal activity to the LFO
Allowable Quantities Users may take of any amount required as long as it is
for subsistence use only.
Who can permits be All villagers are entitled to collect thatching grass as
issued to long as permission has been obtained from the LFO.
Outsiders may access the grass through registration
with the LFO and payment of fee.
Fees/royalties Villagers – no payment
Outsiders – 50 Mk for access on a subsistence basis.
A receipt shall be issued as evidence of payment.
Example of a management plan
This example is based on an actual site but some conditions and uses have been
changed to support this guide as a learning tool.
NGINDEKIMO VILLAGE FOREST AREA
The Community of Ngindekimo Village
with assistance of
Karonga District Forestry Office,
Funding support through;
VILLAGE FOREST AREA
This management plan is to be managed by the Local Forestry Organisation for
Ngindekimo village, TA Kyungu. The LFO is an official body registered with the
District Forestry Office.
Ngindekimo Village Forest Area is near to the western boundary of Karonga South
Escarpment Forest Reserve and is located 17km southwest from Karonga Boma. It
is in Ngindekimo Village, GVH Cheghama, TA Kyungu. The VFA has a size of 202
ha and lies on a hilly land intercepted by some streams and steep valleys, amongst
those the source of Mkungwe Stream. None of the streams has perennial water
flow within the VFA. It is dominated by shallow rocky soils not very suitable for
agriculture. The vegetation is typical for a Dry Miombo Woodland dominated by
Chitontho, Mlama, Chiyombo, Kamphoni, Mpululu, Mzakaka, Munthalembe
(Thombozi), Myokayoka, Kansewe, Muwanga, Chigulya, Musolo, Mpapadende,
Mkulu, Mkunkhu, Cheyo, Mlombwa, Chibwabwa, Mpokwa, and Mtwitwi.
The VFA is in good condition. It is un-even aged woodland with trees of all sizes
mixed in the same area. There are many human activities (interference) visible.
Most of the bamboos along the stream are dead and few are regenerating in the
wet parts of the streams
The boundary is demarcated with white paint. In some areas, it follows the water
courses. The area is already surveyed (See Annex 1).On the northern part of the
VFA, there is a woodland before Mawembe Village. People from Mawembe have
access to forest resources in this buffer zone of Ngindekimo VFA.
This VFA falls on the customary land of Ngindekimo Village Headman. There is
controlled access on VFA while in the forests bordering the VFA there is open
People from Ngindekimo Village are the primary users of the VFA. Other users
include fuel wood vendors from Sadala, Kasote Villages and Karonga Boma. The
managing authority is Ngindekimo Village Natural Management Committee
(VNRMC) with support from the District Forestry Office, Karonga. All users must
have authority from the VNRMC to collect/harvest forest products in the VFA.
People obtain both woody products such as firewood, poles, cooking sticks,
mortars, pestles, and timber and non-woody products such as medicine, fruits,
mushrooms, bamboos, honey, game meat, and thatching grass. Other ecological
services include the catchment protection for the Mkungwe Stream.
Location of Ngindekimo VFA in relation to GVHs and Forest Reserve
Forest Management Units
There are two distinct management units in Ngindekimo VFA.
Unit A. The areas set aside for water catchment protection is 50m on both
sides of the streams and is about 73ha.
Unit B. The remaining area of 129 ha for production purposes.
The specific objective 1 is applicable for Unit B only, specific objectives 2 is
specifically targeting Unit A. Whereas objective 3 is applicable for both
To sustainably manage the village forest area to supply forest products and
services to contribute improving the livelihoods of Ngindekimo Community.
1. To sustainably produce firewood and poles for domestic use and sale
2. To protect the stream banks and other fragile areas
3. To sustainably utilize NTFPs (mushrooms, honey, medicine, fruits)
These, where applicable, relate to the whole VFA.
No Resource Rules Specification Penalty
1 No cutting of live trees Cutting of trees will be Anyone found guilty of cutting
without permit from LFO regulated and monitored trees in the VFA without permit
by the LFO shall pay a fine of K1,000
2 No sawing of timber Timber sawing in VFA will Anyone found guilty of sawing
without permit from LFO be regulated and timber in VFA without permit
monitored by LFO shall pay a fine of K5,000 and
timber shall be confiscated by
3 Only dry wood will be Firewood is free for Anyone found guilty of collecting
collected freely for domestic use only firewood fuelwood for sale without permit
fuelwood. for sale needs permit shall pay a fine of K2,000
Fuelwood for sale needs a
permit of LFO.
4 No setting of bush fires Under control by VNRMC Anyone found guilty of setting
during controlled early bush fires shall pay a fine
burning and patch burning. K3,000
5 Everyone shall participate Community members to Anyone found guilty of refusing
in any communal forestry contribute 4 working days to participate in any communal
activity eg per month towards forestry activity shall pay a fine
Firebreak maintenance management of VFA. of K100 per working day
6 Nobody is allowed to settle Anyone found guilty of settling in
in the VFA a VFA shall pay a fine of K2,000
7 No one is allowed to Anyone found guilty of
cultivate in the VFA cultivating in VFA shall pay a
fine of K2,000 or be taken to a
court of law
8 No utilisation or Anyone found guilty of removing
disturbance is allowed in any products from FMU A shall
FMU A be fined K5,000
9 Any NTFP collected should Anyone found guilty of
be accompanied by a harvesting NTFP from the VFA
permit. will be fined K5,000
Management Plans for each use
For FMU B
Forest Product Poles – Key Product
Firewood – by product of pole production
Timber – where available
Key Species All - Nkholongo, Mpokwa, Mulama, Chitontho, Muguzabango,
Mpululu, Mzakaka, Muthombozi, Mkulu, Muwuluka.
Timber - Mpokwa, Mulama, Mlombwa, Kapanga.
Problems/Issues Wildfires, Theft & Wastage
Management Practices Harvesting of timber, poles and firewood (for sale) will be in
demarcated coupes only.
The area harvested is limited to 8 ha per year in 4 coupes of 2
hectare each resulting in a rotation of 15 years. Coupes will be
selected on an annual basis and clearly marked as harvested.
Harvesting shall take place from March to November each year.
The coupes will be selected and marked by the LFO in February
each year .
Timber trees - Mpokwa, Mulama, Mlombwa, Kapanga – shall be
retained as per allowable quantities. They shall not be harvested for
poles or firewood.
Poles are trees suitable for the purpose which are not marked as
timber or medicinal trees. All material suitable for poles will be
extracted before firewood is produced. Poles have to be piled and
counted by species, before being taken from the VFA.
A minimum of 80 trees in each 2 ha coupe shall be left standing.
Fuelwood is any wood that is not suitable or marked for timber,
medicinal or pole use. All fuelwood in a coupe shall be cut and
stacked in mendles before it is brought to markets. Large diameter
fuelwood which is too bulky to bring to markets may be converted
Trees will be cut below 20cm above ground. Waste will be piled
away from stumps.
In the first three years after harvesting the coupe shall be protected
against fire to allow for regeneration. After this controlled early
burning shall take place.
No harvesting of trees for timber, poles or firewood shall take place
in the harvested coupe for the following 15 years.
Every 2 years an assessment will be made of each harvested
coupe to allow thinning of coppice shoots and too dense
regeneration may be carried out. Thinning will commence 8 years
after harvest of coupe.
Allowable area per Poles and firewood can be extracted according to coupe rotation
year (8ha per year)
Timber trees must have a diameter breast height of >30cm, only
those in current coupe will be harvested. Timber trees <30cm will
be marked as retainers in the respective coupe and will be left
Permits Head load of firewood collected for sale will attract a fee of K100
per head load
Bicycle loads of firewood collected will attract a fee of K200 per
An ox – cart of firewood will attract a fee of K1,000
Cutting of poles will attract a fee of K50 per pole
Sawing timber will attract K3,500 per tree through a license
Making of tool handles will attract a fee of K20 per tool handle
Making of pounding sticks (pestles) and cooking sticks will attract a
fee of K100 per piece
Making of pounding mortars will attract a fee of K500 per mortar
Forest Product Mushrooms
Key Species All types of mushroom
Problems/issues Damage to soils and vegetation reduce the availability of
mushrooms during growing period.
Management Practices Anyone collecting mushrooms must obtain a permit from the LFO.
Mushrooms shall only be harvested from December to March.
Harvesting can be done in both FMUs where mushrooms are
Harvesting of mushrooms must be done to prevent any damage to
the mycelium. Stalks should be snapped of gently at the base.
Collectors should only take mushrooms that have matured, young
mushrooms shall not be removed.
Allowable quantity per A permit allows the holder to take 10 baskets.
The amount of permits to be issued will be done in consultation with
the mushroom collectors in November each year
Fees royalties Mushroom collection is allowed freely for Ngindekimo villagers
through the issuing of permits.
Those outside Ngindekimo shall pay K100 per permit.
NB if different areas are to be harvested then a map should be included.
Forest Product Honey
Problems/issues A lack of beehives means that supply is not met.
Any beekeeping practices have used traditional methods and these
have been detrimental to the forest area – cutting of trees for hives,
or harvesting honey.
Management Practices Bee hives can be kept anywhere within FMU B. No beehives are to
be kept in FMU A.
Permission must be granted from the LFO and a registry kept of
Beehives shall use modern technology and no trees shall be cut for
making hives or harvesting honey.
Anyone found guilty of hanging bee hives in the VFA without the
permit from the VNRMC shall pay a fine of K1,000.
Each beehive must be marked stating the name of the owner of the
Allowable quantity per On obtaining permission the beekeeper is allowed to keep as many
year beehives as they want in the VFA.
Any honey produced shall be solely owned by the beekeeper whom
shall be free to consume or sell as they see fit.
Fees royalties Once permission is granted the beekeeper shall pay k50 per
beehive to the LFO.
NB if different areas are to be harvested then a map should be included.
Forest Product Medicines
Problems/issues Bad harvesting practices
Management Practices Medicinal plants can be collected from FMU B, no plants can be
obtained from FMU A.
Felling or ring barking of trees is not permitted (medicinal plants).
Removal of root stocks shall be done with minimal damage. Only
10% of root can be removed from anyone tree.
Within harvested coupes medicinal plants will be protected and
marked by the LFO. No person shall harvest any of these trees.
Any using bad harvesting practices shall be fined K1,000 byt the
Allowable quantity per Collection of medicinal plants is allowed by any villager at any time
year taking any required amount for subsistence use. However, the
resource rules must be followed.
Fees royalties Collection of medicine is free for Ngindekimo villagers.
If commercial users want to access the VFA then they shall pay a
yearly license fee of K2,000 per year. They must harvest within the
NB if different areas are to be harvested then a map should be included.
Forest Product Fruits
Problems/issues Over harvesting by commercial users restricts availability of fruits
for subsistence use.
Management Practices Fruit harvesting can only be done in FMU B. No fruits shall be
harvested in FMU A.
Felling of fruit tress is not permitted.
Within harvested coupes fruit trees will be protected and marked by
the LFO. Fruits can still be removed from these trees.
Fruits shall only be removed when they are ripe. Anyone found
guilty of early harvesting shall be fined K500.
Allowable area per There is no restriction on the amount of fruit collected for
year subsistence use.
Commercial users shall have to obtain a permit to allow them to
harvest fruits. The quantities will be determined by the LFO
depending on what fruit are in season.
Fees royalties Fruit collection is allowed freely for Ngindekimo villagers on a
Non Ngindekimo people shall pay K50 to harvest fruits for
Commercial users shall pay K200 per permit. The permit will be
issued by the LFO.
NB if different areas are to be harvested then a map should be included.
The following activities will be undertaken on annual basis;
January Mushroom Harvesting
Up date register of beekeepers and collect fees
Issuing of licenses to commercial collectors of medicinal
February Coupe demarcation for the harvesting of poles including
marking reserved trees.
March Harvesting of chosen coupes for poles and firewood
against fee payment
April Harvesting of chosen coupes for poles and firewood
against fee payment
Community meeting to discuss progress and arising issues
May Harvesting of chosen coupes for poles and firewood
against fee payment
June Harvesting of chosen coupes for poles and firewood
against fee payment
Assessment of regeneration on a 2 yearly basis
Thinning of harvested coupes (8 years after harvesting)
Boundary demarcation and any fire breaks cleared
July Harvesting of chosen coupes for poles and firewood
against fee payment
Thinning of harvested coupes (8 years after harvesting)
Early burning of areas around coupes
Early burning of coupes (3 years after harvesting)
August Harvesting of chosen coupes for poles and firewood
against fee payment
September Harvesting of chosen coupes for poles and firewood
against fee payment
October Harvesting of chosen coupes for poles and firewood
against fee payment
Community meeting to discuss progress and arsing issues
November Harvesting of chosen coupes for poles and firewood
against fee payment
Issuing of Mushroom collection permits in consultation with
mushroom collectors, collection of fees
December Mushroom Harvesting
Tree planting in bare areas of VFA
On going activities;
Issuing of commercial licenses for fruit collection
Issuing of licenses for non Ngindekimo villagers to collect fruits
The LFO shall conduct patrol as a managing authority once every 2 months
Individual members of the LFO shall undertake a weekly patrol – a patrol
schedule shall be prepared at the beginning of every year
All permit, license or permission holders shall report any illegal activities that they
observe during the course of their work. Failure to do so will result in cancellation
of their right to utilise the forest
Any payment made to the LFO shall be used as per the constitution of the LFO
LFO chairman and Village Head
District Forestry Officer
Timeline of plan development
Records of PFRA
Template for Forest Management Agreement
FORESTRY MANAGEMENT AGREEMENT
(Forestry Act, 1997 Section 31)
THIS AGREEMENT is made the ……………...day of……………………..
BETWEEN Director of Forestry, Ministry of Mines, Natural Resources & Environment,
hereinafter referred to as the Government, and local residents of …………………….village
of Traditional Authority…………………..and District …………………………………
represented by …………………………………..as the Local Forest Organisation (herewith
described as LFO)
The Government, hereby, wishes to make an agreement with the LFO to provide for the
transfer of management authority and ownership of forest resources of
……………………forest area in order to promote participatory forestry on customary land
through protection, management, control and sustainable utilization of forest resources by
NOW IT IS HEREBY AGREED as follows:
1. The Government shall upon being satisfied with transitional arrangements handover
authority to protect, manage, control and utilize sustainably the forest resource for the
benefit of the local community of ……………………………village(s).
2. The LFO accepts and undertakes to protect, manage, control and utilize sustainably the
forest resource in accordance with terms and conditions stipulated in this agreement and
annexed Management Plan.
3. In particular the Government gives authority to the LFO subject to the following
(a.) Forest resources shall be properly maintained and managed according to approved
management techniques as set out in the annexed Management Plan.
(b.) The LFO shall enforces the powers that have been devolved to them by the
Government in the Forest Rules 2001 - Part III Village Forest Areas (6), and as agreed
in the LFO Registration Agreement.
(c.) The LFO shall protect, manage, control and utilize in a manner that maintains
productivity, the forest resources within their jurisdiction and to issue permits and
licences for forest produce for the benefit of the local community forest resource-rights
holders of the aforementioned village(s) as set out in the annexed management plan.
(d.) To assist the District Forest Officer with the issuing of conveyance certificates, the
local forest organisation may provide the necessary supporting documentation
(ownership certificate) to verify source and ownership of wood products under its
control. It may also assist local private individuals with wood products in their locality
verify ownership for applying for a conveyance certificate from the District Forest
(e.) Benefits accruing from the forest resource shall be equitably utilized by the community
in accordance with the benefit sharing arrangements set out in the annexed
(f.) Revenue accruing from the forest resource shall be equitably utilized by the
community in accordance with the LFO Constitution.
(g.) The LFO shall make accessible records of accounts and licenses issued to the Director
of Forestry or his/her representative, the District Commissioner or his/her
representative upon receiving notification from the Director of Forestry or District
(h.) The LFO shall represent and accountable to the community and operate in accordance
with the agreed constitution.
DISTRICT ASSEMBLY OBLIGATIONS
4. In particular the District Assembly, represented by the District Forestry Officer, shall;
(a.) Provide technical expertise to support the implementation of the attached management
(b.) Advise and assist with monitoring local accountability mechanisms including, conduct
of meetings, elections, by-elections, record keeping and reporting.
(c.) Assist the coordination of forest law enforcement activities between the Organisation,
Traditional Leaders, local community policing forums, local police officers and the District
Magistrate in accordance with annexed management plan.
(d.) With the LFO jointly monitor the Village Forest Area demarcated in the management plan to
ensure management is in accordance with this Agreement and in accordance with Standards &
Guidelines for Participatory Forestry in Malawi.
(e.) In line with licensing procedures issue conveyance certificates against verified documentation
to ensure legal transportation of forest products.
FORESTRY DEPARTMENT OBLIGATIONS
4. In particular the Forest Department shall;
(a.) Provide technical expertise in collaboration with other partners, including assistance revision
of management plans jointly with the LFO.
(b.) Provide in collaboration with other partners, legal, organisational, marketing and other
forms of support to the VNRMC as appropriate.
(c.) Organise in collaboration with other partners, relevant training courses to enhance
organisational, technical and management capacity of LFO, traditional authorities and
other members of the community.
(d.) Recognise and actively support the protection and policing measures taken by the LFO
and the community in accordance with the Forest Act, 1997, Forest Rules 2001, and
Local Forest Organisation Registration Agreement.
(e.) With the LFO jointly monitor the Village Forest Area demarcated in the management
plan to ensure management is in accordance with this Agreement and in accordance
with Standards & Guidelines for Participatory Forestry in Malawi.
(f.) Take steps to monitor jointly with the LFO to ensure that the Village Forest Area is
managed in accordance with this Agreement and annexed Management Plan.
COMMENCEMENT, DURATION AND TERMINATION
5. This Agreement shall come into effect when signed by representatives of the parties,
and shall be binding indefinitely subject to clauses 6 and 9 below.
6. The Government shall have the right to terminate this agreement and revoke authority
to protect, manage, control and utilise forest resources, in any of the following events;
- negligence or failure to protect, manage and control the forest area.
- if the LFO commits any serious breach of this agreement.
7. The powers stipulated in clause 6 above, shall not be exercised unless the Government
has tried all efforts to resolve or correct the situation amicably.
8. In cautioning the local community the government shall cite the shortcomings and
remedies giving the period within which they should be addressed.
9. The LFO may terminate this agreement at any time by giving notice of not less than 8
weeks, in any of the following events;
- if there is serious breach of this agreement.
- if for any reason the community finds itself unable or unwilling to continue with the
activities of the designated forest area.
10. In the event of notice of termination, LFO shall be under obligation to ensure that the
forest area is protected until a Care-Taker Committee or Government has assumed
authority over forest area.
DEMARCATION AND BOUNDARY
11. Division or delineation of forest areas shall be as displayed on the sketch map forming
part of the Management Plan annexed to this Agreement.
12. In the event of any dispute arising under the Forestry Management Agreement, the
matter shall be referred to the Minister of Mines, Natural Resources & Environment. If
any party is dissatisfied with the decision passed by the Minister he/she may apply for a
judicial review to the High Court.
DIRECTOR OF FORESTRY (or DFO)
LOCAL FOREST ORGANISATION
VILLAGE HEADMAN/WOMAN TRADITIONAL AUTHORITY
Management Plan for Village Forest Area