DESERTIFICATION IF NOT TACKLED WILL SPREAD OVER THE COUNTRY- AHMED
Desertification and Land degradation a very worrying phenomenon that has devastated the northern Nigeria and if not tackled will spread across the country.
The Director General, National Agency for the Great Green Wall, Mr Goni Ahmed asserted this when he received the Director General, Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF), Dr Muktari Aminu Kano in his office. Mr Ahmed said the speed at which desertification is moving, destroying farmlands, livestock and even humans is very disturbing and if adequate measure is not taken the country might be engulf with this menace.
The DG said since the inception of the programme over 600 kilometres of shelterbelts, over 200 kilometres of woodlots, almost 300 hectares of Orchards have been established, 157 boreholes sunk and five skill acquisition centres build amongst other achievements. He said although the project has been faced with some challenges as with any other government project, the Agency is not relenting in seeing that the vision and mandate of the GGW programme is achieved.
He appreciated the collaboration with the foundation as a window to other international groups, saying that for the Agency to bring back life and hope to the affected people, support from Ngo’s such as the NCF that is at the fore front on ecological activities is a welcome idea to achieving the goals of the GGW programme in Nigeria.
In his speech, the Director General, Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF), Dr Muktari Aminu Kano, said he is pleased that what was conceived by the then President Obasanjo and adopted by the African Union has matured. He said his foundation prioritise Agencies to work with for maximum input and the NAGGW is found to be one and therefore, sought for collaboration, noting that in the past so many government projects embarked upon had no coherent success because of lack of collaboration.
He noted that the task of the Agency is not only on environmental issues but also socio-cultural issues such as security, unemployment, poverty, migration and the rest which are mostly caused by desert encroachment.
`He said NCF is an environmental non-governmental organisation that work to preserve the natural resources and biodiversity of Nigeria. It has partnership with a number of international environmental groups including the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), amongst many others. He promised giving a major input in bringing in some of these international groups to join in the fight against desertification and land degradation to make sure the Great Green Wall is built and completed as against desert encroachment and other socio-economic activities in the country.
Head (Press and Public Relations Unit)
17th May, 2018