Posted on 12 June 2023
12 June 2023, Kathmandu
: The National Foundation for the Development of Indigenous Nationalities (NFDIN) with support from WWF Nepal has launched the National Implementation Guideline for Free, Prior, Informed Consent (FPIC). WWF and NFDIN had signed an MOU in January 2023 to join hands to uplift community voices by promoting a right based approach to biodiversity conservation and adapting the FPIC guidelines. The launch of the FPIC implementation plan is the next step to this collaboration and aims to ensure that Indigenous People’s rights are protected.
Vice Chair of NFDIN Mr. Gokul Gharti said, “The FPIC Guidelines need to be rolled out at all 7 provinces and 753 local governments. Currently, as the budget has been cut off by the government of Nepal in the current fiscal year, we depend upon support from development partners mainly WWF. FPIC contributes to implementing the ILP 69, the government’s commitment to the international agreement.”
Kalpana Bhattachan from NEFIN, Congratulated NFDIN for bringing out the FPIC Guidelines and sharing it with wider stakeholders in Kathmandu. She reiterated the importance of support from development partners in translating the FPIC guidelines into actions, moving forward.
Dr. Ghana Shyam Gurung, the Country Representative of WWF Nepal talked about how WWF Nepal integrates FPIC and active indigenous participation in its conservation work. “We have recognized that successful conservation requires partnership from indigenous Peoples in the design and implementation” he said. “We have been working with this mechanism for many decades, an example is the successful handover of the Kanchenjunga Conservation Area to the local indigenous community back in 2006. We will continue working with a community centered approach”, he added.
WWF recognizes the right of Indigenous Peoples to give, modify, withhold, or withdraw their free, prior, and informed consent (FPIC) to interventions, or parts thereof, that may affect their peoples, or their lands, territories, and natural resources.
An inclusive and meaningful participation of indigenous people, equitable resource management and upliftment of indigenous communities lies at the center of WWF’s work. The only path ahead is an inclusive and equitable one.