The Federal Ministry of Environment says that a National Strategic Action Plan for the implementation of the Great Green Wall Sahara and Sahel Initiative (GGWSSI) has been produced.
Dr Bukhar Hassan, the Director, Drought, Desertification and Amelioration Department, , of the ministry made this known in an interview with newsmen in Abuja last Wednesday.
Hassan said that the project was a recent attempt in Africa to address desertification in a more coherent manner.
He said that combating desertification would improve the well-being of the affected people and reduce their vulnerability its impact, amplified by climate change.
He added that the project would be executed through improved use of land and other natural resources for sustainable development.
According to him, the project will commence after the establishment of the shelter belt project.
A shelter belt is a plantation usually made up of one or more rows of trees or shrubs planted in such a manner as to provide shelter from wind and to protect soil from erosion.
Shelter belts are commonly planted around the edges of fields or farms.
Hassan said that the programme would be officially inaugurated by President Goodluck Jonathan as soon as the actual field implementation has been established.
He said that in November last year, a team comprising officials from the ministry, commissioners the participating states and some technical officers, visited the GGWSSI project sites in Senegal to learn from their experiences.
The director further said that the Federal Government had resuscitated the National Council on Shelterbelt Afforestation to be chaired by Vice President Namadi Sambo.
He said that ministers from seven line ministries alongside the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and the Permanent Secretary, Ecological Fund Office were members of the council.
“The council was inaugurated by the chairman of the council and Nigeria’s vice president with a mandate to start preparations for the immediate take off of the project.
“The Federal Government has also approved some resources for the implementation of the project, though it is difficult for us to mention the figures at the moment, but the resources is in the process of being provided for the take-off of the project.
Youth Group Faults Protest Against HYPREP
Following the protest that rock the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP)last Monday by some youth groups in Ogoniland calling for the dissolution of the governing board of the agency,s more groups in the area said the call is not necessary, as it was aimed at querying the pedigree of the Project Cordinator, Prof Neniibarini Zabbey.
In an interview with journalists, the Bodo City Youth Federation led by Joseph Lenu and his executive members said they condems in strong terms the protest led by the President Generalof Ogoni Youth Federation, Mr. Lagborsi Yaamabaana.
Group further warned that the youths would not take it kindly with any groups or individuals that want to undermine the peace and security of Ogoni land at this critical time noting that the organiser of the said Protest should tender an apology to the project coordinator and the Ogoni youths.
Group Distances Self From HYPREP Protest
A concerned group under the auspices of Ogoni General Youth Assembly, has distanced itself from the protest organised by Mr. Legbosi Yaamabaana against the Hydrocarbon Pollution Remediation Project (HYPREP) last Monday.
The President of the group, Comrade BarinekaTornwe in a statement said the Protest led by Yaamabaana was against the best interest of the Ogonis and would not yield any positive result.
According to him, Yaamabaana, a HYPREP contractor himself, would only be using the sweat and blood of Ogoni youths to push for more expensive contracts”, adding that the said youth leader “Yaamabaan is always on self-enrichment mode and never for the over-all good interest of the Ogoni youths”
Tornwe therefore enjoined all Ogoni youths to avoid him and rather support HYPREP to execute its core mandate of providing alternative source of livelihood to Ogonis through skills training for women and youths.
It would be recalled that recently, HYPREP concluded another training for 3,000 Ogoni youths and women in various empowernment skills, and pledged not to relent its effort in the interest of the people of Ogoni.
The president of the group, further alleged that “It is Yaamabaana’s plan to hijack the central youth training programme from HYPREP and run it a contractor”.
Tornwe however commended HYPREP for what it has done so far on the execution of its mandate, and appealed that it should stay focused on its assignment and not to allow treacherous persons to sway it into the wrong way.
Minister Tasks RSG On Open Defecation
The Minister of Water Resources and Sanitation, Prof Joseph Terlummum Utsev has called on the Rivers State Government to fulfill it own agreement of ending open defecation by the year 2030.
Prof. Utsev stated this in Port Harcourt during a familiarisation tour to the Niger Delta Basin Authority (NDBA) facilities and projects in the State,
He said eradicating open defecation will improve hygiene, sanitation and health standard of the people.
The Minister explained that the visit was aimed at assessing infrastructure, programmes of the authority required to meet the agenda of President Bola Tinubu in ensuring a better society.
He said toilets must be constructed at motor parks with a view to enthroning hygiene.
“To end open defecation and enthrone hygiene, we need to construct toilets at the motor parks, hospitals, schools and public places to ensure the objective is achieved. So, the Rivers State Government needs to come on board.
“There is a need for us to build synergy between the three tiers of government to ensure that this is achieved.” he said.
The Minister also explained that access to potable water is part of the mandate of the Ministry, and assured that it will be delivered.
. “We are targeting about 500 hectares of land across the country under irrigation. We cannot succeed without completing all our dams that are under construction, ensuring we complete the projects.
“We will engage state governments in allocation of lands, while we provide water for irrigation, the government is supposed to give the Certificate of Occupancy to ensure that the land belongs to the farmers to avoid any issue with the farmers,” he said.
“The government is serious about improving the lives of Nigerians, ensuring food security, wealth creation and youth empowerment”
“Some projects that will drive this have been completed, while some are ongoing, we are determined to complete more projects and initiate new ones.”
It would be recalled that Nigeria currently sits at the top as far as open defecation was concerned.
The country took over from India.
It would also be noted that out of the 36 States in the country, only Jigawa State is open defecation free.
Niger Delta2 days ago
Bolt Driver, Female Passenger Abducted In Calabar
News2 days ago
Ex-NUPENG Secretary, Frank Kokori Dies At 80, Keyamo Mourns
Politics2 days ago
Alleged Move To Arrest Sylva: Leave Diri Alone, PDP Tells APC
News2 days ago
FRSC Commander Faces Sanction Over Unauthorised Comments
Opinion2 days ago
What Hope, Oh Super Eagles!
Rivers2 days ago
WAD: Commissioner Charges Communities On HIV Control …87% Rivers People Virally Suppressed
Sports2 days ago
‘It Is Too Late To Build The Confidence Of Home-Based Goalkeepers’
Nation2 days ago
NAPTIP Arraigns Woman Who Sold Over 120 Children …Laments Unavailability Of Tracking Devices