The National Agency for the Great Green Wall has warned of gradual spread of desert encroachment across the country.
Director General of the agency, Mr. Goni Ahmed said if not checked, desertification will engulf the nation.
The DG issued the warning when he received Director General of Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF), Dr. Muktari Aminu Kano in Abuja.
He said desertification and land degradation are worrying phenomenon that have devastated northern part of the country.
In a statement issued yesterday in Abuja, the DG expressed worry on the speed at which desertification is moving, destroying farmlands, livestock and even humans at very disturbing rate.
According to him, if adequate measure is not taken the country might be engulfed with the menace.
The DG said since the inception of the programme over 600 kilometres of shelterbelts, over 200 kilometres of woodlots, almost 300 hectares of Orchards have been established, 157 boreholes sunk and five skill acquisition centres built among other achievements.
He said although the project was confronted with some challenges just like other government project but the agency is not relenting to ensure vision and mandate of the GGW programme is achieved.
He lauded the collaboration with the foundation describing it as a window to other international groups.
In his remark, the DG, NCF, Dr. Aminu, expressed satisfaction over the initiative conceived by the former President Olusegun Obasanjo and further adopted by the African Union has matured.
He said his foundation prioritise Agencies to work with for maximum input and the NAGGW is found to be one and therefore, sought for collaboration, noting that in the past so many government projects embarked upon had no coherent success due to proper collaboration.
He noted that the task of the Agency is not only on environmental issues but also socio-cultural issues such as security, unemployment, poverty, migration and the rest which are mostly caused by desert encroachment.
“NCF is an environmental non-governmental organisation that work to preserve the natural resources and biodiversity of Nigeria. It has partnership with a number of international environmental groups including the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), amongst many others”. He said.