Rebecca Mu’azu, Gombe
Gombe State Governor Alhaji Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya has officially launched a four million tree planting campaign known as Gombe Goes Green or 3G.
The project is geared towards curbing weather and man-made induced environmental challenges affecting the state like desertification and erosion.
Speaking at the official launch of the programme in Dukku Local Government Area of Gombe State, Governor Yahaya said it was gratifying that his government had already planted 86 thousand trees in nine local government areas of the state.
Governor Yahaya said 15 thousand of the number had already been planted on 12 major streets in the Gombe metropolis and roads inside the Gombe International Airport.
Impact of flood
He said Deforestation and poor land use had been the major causes of erosion, and the destruction of Agricultural farm lands, loss of lives, homes and property, devastation of roads and other infrastructural facilities.
Governor Yahaya gave a cheering news that the 3G programme was taking deliberate measures to reduce the negative impact of flood and erosion on the populace and making concerted effort in seeking Partnership with international donor agencies to provide affordable, alternative low energy cooking facilities that would reduce the pressure on the forests.
Provision of jobs
He said his administration would use the 3G programme to address the adverse environmental challenges through tree planting and provision of jobs to for the teeming youths in Gombe and plant One million trees each year in his first tenure, which would consequently generate direct jobs for the youths.
Governor Yahaya said his government had recently paid the 500 million naira counterpart contribution to the World Bank in order to access funds for the Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project, NEWMAP work in the State.
Plant more trees
He said NEWMAP would commence work on the Gombe State University and Federal College of Education Technical ditch erosions as soon as the designs of the two sites were approved by the World Bank.
The Gombe State Governor called on community leaders and individuals to support the 3G Project and fight the menace of desert encroachment and erosion by protecting the trees planted, while encouraging them to plant more trees in the environment.
The Emir of Dukku, Alhaji Haruna Abdulkadir Rashid II, while thanking the governor for the bold step taken, pledged that his emirate would take care of the seedlings and ensure their survival to curb the menace of environmental challenges in his area.
For Professor Abdullahi Mahdi, the Vice Chancellor, Gombe State University of Science and Technology, who has had over 50 years experience in tree planting in Nigeria, promised to give the 3G programme all the support it needed to succeed.