DG highlights Great Green Wall’s achievements, seeks media support
In a bid to showcase the remarkable achievements so far recorded by National Agency for the Great Green Wall (NAGGW), Dr. Bukar Hassan, has solicited the support and mutual collaboration of the media.
He made the plea while hosting members of the Environmental Media Correspondents of Nigeria (EMCAN), who paid him a familiarization visit at his office, in Abuja.
He equally promised to partner and work with the association and other members of the press to fully actualize his visions for the Agency.
Dr. Hassan, who is GGW’s Director General, explained that the media is a dependable partner in progress, hence they must be carried along by any organisation who desire to achieve successes in their activities.
He noted that the press was instrumental to the ‘sterling’ achievements GGW recorded in the areas of combating desertification and degradation, among others, saying “the media has greatly assisted not only in publicizing their good works, but also, some members of the press have offered him their portent suggestions and powerful ideas.”
Dr. Hassan, while speaking further, stated that the vision of NAGGW for the drylands of Nigeria includes creating an enabling environment or condition, which will promote the sustainable management of the drylands ecosystems and provide the affected people with foundation for their wellbeing and livelihoods.
The vision, he however, said can only be actualized with the strong support of all the stakeholders and their active participation in all processes of the programme implementation.
On the rationale behind the establishment of the Agency, Bukar Hassan, said GGW was designed to reverse and prevent desertification/land degradation in the affected areas in order to support poverty reduction and environmental sustainability through partnership and collaboration with local, national and international stakeholders.
“Some of the groundbreaking achievements recorded by the National Agency for the Great Green Wall (NAGGW) attained in 2017 using the Green Bond proceeds and other funding mechanisms include the production of 1,578,517 assorted tree seedlings for afforestation activities, establishments of 128.8km shelterbelt, 105.2ha community woodlot, 58.5ha community orchard, E-Library, GIS Laboratory, installation of automatic weather stations at APCU Kano and NEAZAP, Gashua; construction of nine solar-powered boreholes for water supply, land rehabilitation through the FAO supported AAD programme, and a pilot community-based fish farming project in Yobe State.
“Equally, the Agency’s afforestation activities were carried out jointly with the affected frontline States and the local communities. In 2018, about 904,574 tree seedlings were produced for the establishment of shelterbelt, woodlot and orchard. Similarly, about 65km shelterbelt using mainly neems was established in 2018 towards increasing the vegetation cover of the affected areas and protecting over 1,300ha of farmland,” he said.
Mr. Chuks Onyema, EMCAN Chairman, while stating the purpose of their courtesy call, said they decided to visit GGW so as to applaud the DG and his team for the ‘amazing work’ they are doing to check desertification and land degradation, among other ecological challenges.
While assuring their host that EMCAN is not a body that takes delight in blackmailing or writing negatively about Agencies under the Federal Ministry of Environment (FMENV), Mr. Onyema, called for a mutual partnership between the two organisations.
“We are here to appreciate the good works you are doing. But more importantly, we are here to seek ways on how to partner your great Agency. We appealed to GGW, under your dynamic leadership, not to sideline the media in all their programmes and activities. We should be carried along in everything you do, and mostly especially, GGW should also prioritize the welfare of our members,” he said.
Highpoint of the visit was the presentation of GGW’s 2017 and 2018 annual reports by Dr. Hassan and the EMCAN delegation.
The duo of Mrs. Pauline Sule, the Agency’s Director of Press and Mr. Bagudu Majidadi, a top management staff, joined their DG in a group photograph with the visiting EMCAN officials.
By Abdulsalam Mahmud