The Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) mission 4 was conducted in Bualapha district, Khammounae province from 12 to 19 January 2021 in 3 target villages and their sub-hamlets: Dou, Thongxam (Thongxam North and South sub-hamlets) and Vangmaner (Vangmaner main and Salang sub-hamlets).
A total of 15 people from the Hin Nam No (HNN) stakeholders’ landscape consulted with the local communities from the 3 villages. This included participants from the District Governor Office, the District Co-Management Steering Committee, the Provincial Lao Women Union, HNN National Park Office (NPO), the Community Outreach and Conservation Awareness (COCA) technical team of HNN NPO and the Protection and Sustainable Use of Forest Ecosystems and Biodiversity (ProFEB II) GIZ project.
This process is financially supported by the German Government through the project ProFEB II, which is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.
The consultations aimed to enhance communities’ participation as well as acknowledge their issues and concerns related to HNN NP and World Heritage into account and to make sure that they are informed and consent freely to HNN NP becoming a Natural World Heritage site of UNESCO.
The consultations topics consisted of discussing about (I) Hin Nam No natural and cultural values; (II) the meaning of World Heritage; (III) The FPIC process; (IV) plants and wildlife species protection lists; (V) the co-management, buffer zone and zonation processes.
Mr. Soukaserm Keochanthala, Vice-District Governor of Bualapha, supported the importance of the FPIC process in enhancing exchange with and develop ownership of the HNN NP surrounding communities, in order to work together towards the future World Heritage nomination of HNN NP.