The Central Albertine Rift is one of the most species-rich landscapes containing contiguous protected areas and more vertebrates than any other single set of contiguous protected areas in Africa (Plumptre et al, 2003). Its landscape is diverse, ranging from glaciers at the top of the Rwenzoris through alpine moorland, forests, to savanna grasslands. The CAR ecosystem is transboundary in nature and the PAs therein face similar threats (ref SWOT in chapter two). There is thus need for a collaborative effort to strengthen biodiversity conservation and PA management specifically within the TB PA Network.
This 10-year transboundary strategic plan has been developed for the three Protected Area Authorities of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda and Uganda. Its implementation shall be supported by a variety of stakeholders relevant to biodiversity conservation and socio-economic development within the Central Albertine Rift. The Transboundary Strategic Planning Process for the whole of the Albertine Rift was initiated in 2001. This strategic plan takes this process forward, focusing it on the wildlife protected area network within the Central Albertine Rift.
The planning process has been consultative, spearheaded by the TCS and the three Protected Area Authorities through a Core Planning Team with the assistance of a facilitator. The planning was carried out the using SWOT, which formed the basis for developing strategic objectives and the strategies for achieving them. Indicators of progress were formulated and form the basis for the monitoring of the plan.
A 30 year vision was formulated as the Central Albertine Rift Transfrontier PA Network together with the surrounding Landscape conserved sustainably. While the goal for the plan is Sustainable Conservation of the CAR Biodiversity for Long Term Socio-Economic Development through Strategic Transboundary Collaborative Management.
The strategic objectives give direction to the plan, highlighting the plan intentions over the next 10 years. This part of the plan gives guidance for operational planning and acts as a reference for monitoring progress and evaluating performance. To ease development of operational plans, the strategic objectives are grouped under Key Result Areas or distinct program units:
KRA1 - Enabling Environment
KRA2 - Landscape Management
KRA3 - Effective Management Capacity
KRA4 - Collaboration
KRA5 - Law Enforcement
KRA6 - Education and Awareness
KRA7 - Economic Development
KRA8 – Financial Sustainability
A structure for decision-making and to guide the transboundary natural resources management shall be formalised. It includes:
Transboundary Inter-Ministerial Board
The Transboundary Core Secretariat
Technical Committees for Research; Tourism; Community Conservation and Enterprise; Security and Law Enforcement
A Regional Forum to ensure collaboration and harmony amongst stakeholders
The plan shall be implemented through management planning and program development at regional level and operational planning at the national and regional levels. The budget highlighted is only a very rough estimate and shall be fine-tuned during operational planning or during development of discrete projects targeting any of the KRA. It is the duty of the TCS and the respective governments to identify potential sources of funding, lobby and negotiate with potential donors.