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Government to sensitise communities on effect of land degradation

The Federal Ministry of Environment says it will start sensitising communities on the effects of land degradation across the country.

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Desertification and land degradation are said to be serious challenges that can lead to hunger and poverty

Mr Bala Gukut, the Deputy Director, Drought and Desertification Amelioration Department, disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday, January 10, 2018 in Abuja.

He said that the federal government had set up a working committee on March 9, 2017 to work out a report aimed at achieving land degradation neutrality project by 2030.

He added that the government would be setting up another committee to handle the awareness exercise for effective implementation of the project.

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“The committee will ensure that the exercise gets to all the communities at the local government level.

“The committee is expected to split the members into various teams to ensure that their efforts are effective and to come up with positive results.

“The land degradation project is what I call `top bottom approach’, meaning that the committee will start the awareness creation from local to the federal levels.

“We will begin from the people, plan with them, go with them and work with them; this will help us to know what they are doing to preserve their land.

“With that, we can bring in our scientific ideas, introduce it to them and tell them to use the practice this will enable effective implementation of the project,’’ Gukut said.

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According to him, implementation is the key approach of any project; the committee will let them know the implication of degraded land.

“They will also educate them on how they can manage their land, the kind of activities they do that can damage their land.

“The committee will also let them know what can be done to avoid such damage, these are the kind of awareness we want to start with,’’ he said.

Gukut said that Nigeria was among the first countries that sent her report to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) on the land degradation and neutrality.

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He noted that about 110 countries were currently participating to achieving land degradation neutrality by 2030.

According to him, we don’t know the exact number of countries that have sent their report to the UNCCD, but the UNCCD said Nigeria was one of the first countries that had completed and submitted its report.

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