Godson Elekwachi FRCN
The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification says that more than 12 million hectares of land are lost globally to desertification, land degradation and drought each year.
It says 24 billion tons of fertile soil is lost globally due to dry land degradation affecting food production and food security, and it is estimated that 300 million hectares of land will be required to meet the demand of food by the year 2030.
To commemorate the 2021 World Desertification and Drought Day in Abuja, the Minister of Environment, Dr. Mohammed Abubakar says Nigeria is faced with rapid desert encroachment affecting about fifteen Northern states from severe to moderate rate.
According to the Minister, the states affected by desertification have a population of over 40million people and is home to over 95 percent of the livestock population in Nigeria and has played a major role in the production of food for domestic consumption and export.
He noted that the Nigerian Government is not oblivious of these environmental issues and their impacts but is committed to addressing them to ensure sustainable development and livelihoods of the people in the affected communities.
The Minister maintained that Federal Government has developed policies, built institutional and legislative capacities to enhance effective and far-reaching actions to reduce the impacts of desertification and drought on the citizenry.
The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory Alhaji Muhammad Musa Bello explains that the event is to create awareness in the fight against desertification, land degradation and drought.
He says the country take measures to improve food production, as well as reduce hunger, poverty, disease, and malnutrition.