Nigeria and other Countries Move to Save Lake Chad

The President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari, said the Federal Government and other member states of the Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC) has taken many proactive actions towards replenishing the Lake and enhancing economic activities in the region as a result of increasing degradation of the Lake Chad ecosystem.

Declaring the International Conference on Lake Chad open on Monday 26th February, 2018 in Abuja, with the theme “Saving the Lake Chad to revitalize the Basin’s Ecosystem for Sustainable, Livelihood, Security and Development”, the President who was represented by the Vice President, Professor Osinbajo said “this International Conference is a follow up action on previous activities by member states to create global awareness on the socio-economic and environmental issues arising from the shrinkage of the Lake Chad.”

He charged experts to come up with a roadmap that will serve as a guide at high level session in making a worthy declaration towards saving the Lake Chad from extinction.

The Deputy Director-General of United Nations on education, Scientific and Culture Organization (UNESCO), Mr. Getachew Engida said that Lake Chad has dwindled as a result of climate change. “Fragile ecosystems are being destroyed, the flood plains, forests and the river banks have disrupted the entire ecosystem of the Basin”.

He urged participants to find resolutions that would break the cycle of ecological disaster, livelihood disruption and political upheaval which has led to serious ecological disaster. “By working collectively, we can overcome those challenges to achieve long-time peace and prosperity in the region”.

He said that UNESCO has twenty years of experience working in the region and promised that his agency will continue to support countries through their expertise not only in science, but also in culture, education and communication to develop innovative solution.

In his welcome address, the Minister of Water Resources, Engr. Suleiman H. Adamu, FNSE acknowledged His Excellency, Muhammadu Buhari’s untiring support towards the resuscitation of the Lake. This is further evident in the hosting of the International Conference.

Continuing, the Minister said that the Lake epicenter of human, animal and plant life for the region and must be saved from extinction. He added that Lake Chad riparian populations have their relationship with the natural environment and therefore influences environmental sustainability.

The Minister noted that “saving the Lake Chad in a sustainable manner is a task which requires the collaboration of all relevant stakeholders.”

Oise Johnson
Deputy Director (Press and Public Relations Unit)