Nigeria partners with Niger, Chad on rehabilitation of Lake Chad Basin



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Nigeria partners with Niger, Chad on rehabilitation of Lake Chad Basin

Nigeria, Niger and Chad are working on a joint trans-border agro ecosystem project aimed at the restoration of livelihoods and rehabilitation of the Lake Chad Basin.



Director-General, National Agency for the Great Green Wall Dr. Bukar Hassan stated this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) after an international conference on desertification yesterday in New Delhi, India.

NAN reports that the 14th Conference of Parties (CoP 14) to UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) was held at India Expo Centre and Mart from September 2 to September 13.



He said since environmental issues did not recognise national boundaries, the partnership would help to rehabilitate agricultural system, restore degraded land and livelihoods of people in Lake Chad basin.

According to him, the project includes promotion of agroforestry and livestock development in the three participating countries bordering the Lake Chad Basin.

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The Director General said Lake Chad, which was located in a very dry area, had lost about 90 per cent of its water over the years, thus making farming unattractive in the basin.

“Today, agriculture is no longer practiced in the Nigerian side of the Lake Chad Basin.

“So, our responsibility as an agency of Nigerian government is to make sure that we regain what we lost in terms of water (which has created huge unemployment among the people) and empower the people to be able to get back their land which was lost due to the disappearance of lake.

“We will also make sure that the boundary of the lake is afforested to stabilise the basin.

“The Lake Chad basin was one of the worst degraded areas in the world with attendant humanitarian crisis.

“That’s why our president is keen on seeing that the basin is rehabilitated because the insurgency affecting the three participating countries is all linked to environmental degradation.

“That’s why we are developing a project that will help in rehabilitating the Chad basin,” Hassan said.

He said President Muhammadu Buhari had already given his agency marching orders to intensify afforestation specifically in the country’s five northern border states of Sokoto, Jigawa Yobe, Borno and Katsina.

He said land degradation and desertification resulting in loss of livelihoods had led to forced migration of young people from the north to the southern parts of the country.

“There was mass movement because the means of livelihoods are no longer there; otherwise people will not just board an articulated vehicles from Jigawa to Lagos in search of a means of livelihood.

“So, we’re trying to provide capacity for these people to get them adapted to the arid environments they found themselves and also do some economic activities, so that they can stay put where they were, take care of their families like everyone else,” Hassan said.

Nigeria partners with Niger, Chad on rehabilitation of Lake Chad Basin

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