Jigawa plants 2.5m tree seedlings to tackle desertification, create employment
Governor Muhammadu Badaru of Jigawa on Saturday said his government had planted 2.5 million tree seedlings in the last one year to fight desertification and create jobs in the state.
Badaru said this in Dutse when he received Minister of Environment, Hajiya Amina Muhammed, who paid him a courtesy visit.
He explained that 500,000 of the seedlings were economic trees, which would boost the economy of the state and create employment for its citizens.
The governor, however, said that desertification and the menace of Typhus grass had made farming and fishing difficult in the state.
He said that his administration had initiated a campaign to educate people on the importance of planting economic trees like “jetropha’’ and “gum Arabic’’.
Badaru said that Typhus grass had been a serious challenge in the state, as it often prevented free flow of water, thereby causing flooding which destroyed farmlands and houses.
He reiterated his commitment to working with Federal Ministry of Environment to tackle all the environmental challenges facing the state.
In her remarks, Muhammed said that she was in the state to launch the 2016 World Desertification Day.
She said that the Federal Government’s decision to hold the event in Jigawa was due to the fact that Jigawa was one of the states that were ravaged by desertification in the country.
This year, we are talking about issues, where the issues are very real, and where we can see the issues in the communities.
Desertification has caused a lot of problems, in terms of poverty that we have today and its effects on the livelihoods of the people’’ she said.
The minister said that the Federal Government would implement the Great Green Wall programme introduced by the African Union (AU), adding that the programme covered about 1,500 kilometres in 11 states and 49 local governments across the country.
Muhammed said that 50 million Nigerians would be affected in the areas covered by the Great Green Wall programme.
According to her, the programme is not all about planting trees but relates to trees that will enhance the nation’s economy and also create jobs for the citizens.
She said that apart from the green wall project, her ministry would use the existing shelterbelt programme to reclaim lands that were hitherto affected desert encroachment.