Nigeria restates commitment to revive Lake Chad

By Cyril Okonkwo, Abuja

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Lake Chad

The Nigerian government says it is committed to ensuring the recharging and revitalisation of the Lake Chad Basin, to tackle the issues of security, livelihood and development of the region.

Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo said the issue of the Lake Chad Basin is of great concern to President Muhammadu Buhari who has been advocating the recharging of the Basin.

Professor Osinbajo stated this on Monday when he received a delegation from the National Defence College, NDC, comprising Course 27 participants in Abuja.

A statement from the Office of the Vice President said the participants presented their annual report on ‘Water Resource Management and Regional Security: Lake Chad in perspective’ to Professor Osinbajo.

Commending the participants of NDC Course 27 for the clarity of its presentation and recommendations in tackling the issues, he noted that their research work has introduced some fresh ideas and fresh thinking into what the Nigerian government hopes to be focusing on in the Lake Chad Basin.

“I’m particularly struck by the research that you’ve done on the Lake Chad Basin…I want to say the quality and clarity of the research work, and the recommendations made, demonstrate that there is a lot of resource that we can tap in. 

“We look for best practices everywhere. So, it’s a pleasure to see presentations done with much clarity and understanding. Being something of great concern to Mr. President, I think that he will be very excited to hear that we, at least, have a number of options.

“You know how much time and attention Mr. President has paid to this issue, not just locally, but also in the Lake Chad Basin Commission.

“He has spent a lot of time trying to advocate for recharging the Lake Chad, to settle the matter once and for all,” he explained.

Further consultations
Professor Osinbajo said Nigeria would have further consultations with foreign partners and friends to tackle the issues in the region that would benefit all.

“I’m also struck by the fact that you have a comparative analysis; this appears to be an advantage. I’m glad we have something here that is workable, at least it is worth the time investigating further,” he added.

Lake Chad Basin Commission member countries include Nigeria, Chad, Niger, Cameroon and the Central African Republic.

Member countries are collaborating to proffer solutions to security, environmental and socio-economic challenges as a result of the shrinking of the Lake Chad.

 

Mercy Chukwudiebere