The Honourable Minister of State Environment, Alhaji Ibrahim Usman Jibril reaffirms the commitment of the Federal Government to restoring degraded lands across the country using the holistic approach of the Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project (NEWMAP).
The minister who was accompanied by Dr. Shehu Ahmed, Permanent Secretay Federal Ministry of Environment, DG Great Green Wall (GGW), Mr. Goni Ahmed and the National Project Coordinator NEWMAP, Alhaji Salisu Dahiru disclosed this at the joint NEWMAP/GGW (Great Green Wall) mission to Sokoto State.
The Minister, while commending NEWMAP says it is a new concept in Nigeria that takes care of both erosion and restoration of livelihoods. He calls for proper coordination and collaboration especially with the traditional institutions for effective project implementation.
Amongst the projects inspected in the state is the Lugu Dam in Wurno Local government Area of Sokoto state which the minister described as historic and pledged the supports of the Federal Government and the World Bank towards its resuscitation considering the positive impacts in the country.
The Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Waziri Tambuwa who was represented by Alhaji Bello Mohammed Sifawa, the Hon. Commissioner for Environment, Sokoto State says Sokoto state has demonstrated its readiness in the project in many forms especially through the payment of counterpart funds and appealed to the federal government to expedite action on the restorations of Dam, rivers and degraded landscapes in the state.
In the same vein, Alhaji Salisu Dahiru, National Project Coordinator, NEWMAP said that the National project office would accelerate action on the commencement of the restoration work on the Lugu Dam due to its strategic and historic importance to the state.
He further stated that NEWMAP revolutionary approach and progress recorded by the initial seven states 8made it very attractive, in September 2015 additional 7 states; Delta, Gombe, Kogi, Kano, Plateau, Oyo and Sokoto joined the project having met the necessary selection criteria. Presently, the third phase of states that recently joined the project includes; Akwa Ibom, Borno, Katisina, Nasarawa, and Niger, States; thus making a total number of 19 states in the project.