Minister of Environment, Mrs. Hadiza Ibrahim Mailafiya
By Paul Obi
Minister of Environment, Mrs. Hadiza Ibrahim Mailafiya, has reaffirmed the resolve of the Federal Government to check the problems of land degradation, desertification, food insecurity and impoverishment of communities in the dry land regions of Nigeria in partnership with, and support from, the 11 frontline states, comprising Yobe, Adamawa, Kastina, Kebbi,Kano, Kaduna,Sokoto,Bauchi, Gombe, Kwara and Jigawa.
She stated this while inaugurating a technical committee to review the current strategy and approach to the implementation of the Great Green Wall (GGW) programme in collaboration with state and Local Governments.
“The Federal Ministry of Environment is fully committed to the implementation of the Great Green Wall (GGW) project in Nigeria with the inauguration of the technical committee, with a view to developing an action plan that would ensure effective conclusion,” she said.
Mailafiya also urged the commissioners from the 11 frontline states to take the project seriously by fully involving the host communities in discharging the Federal Government’s initiative on desertification.
Earlier, the leader of the delegation Mr. Isa Ibrahim Bungudu, who is the Commissioner of Environment, Zamfara State, commended the doggedness of the Minister of Environment in tackling the surge of desertification with the implementation of Great Green Wall project. He assured that state governments of the 11 frontline states will capitalise on the good gestures from the Federal Government by providing the much needed cooperation.
Speaking at the inauguration, the chairman of the committee, Mr. Taiye Haruna, who is the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Environment, said the committee was being constituted to provide technical support to the National Council on Afforestation and Shelter belt, the Ministry and other stakeholders on the implementation of (GGW) in Nigeria.
The permanent secretary observed that GGW is an African partnership supported by the international community to check and reverse land degradation in the regions of Africa through inter- related and coordinated set of interventions.
The project which, according to him, is designed to fight land degradation in the nation’s dry-lands through the establishment of strips of greenery of more than 7100km long and 15km wide that would run from Dakar to Djbouti, is expected to pass through Senegal, Mauritania, Mali, Bukina- faso, Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea and Djibouti.