The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has declared its readiness to strengthen bilateral relationship with Nigeria in terms of wild preservation to reduce impact of climate change.
Dr Fahad AL-Taffaq, United Arab Emirates (UAE) Ambassador to Nigeria, made this known in his address on sideline of his official visit to the National Park headquarters yesterday in Abuja.
The visit focused on the rehabilitation of endangered “Scimitar Oryx” breed of Antelope and to discuss ways UAE could partner with National Park Service in Zoos and wild life programmes.
According to him, today is a step that we shall build upon and do things we hopefully can do for the National Parks and the Ministry of Environment here in Nigeria.
AL-Taffaq said, “To understand the species that we would focus on and identify areas in the National Park or National Game Reserves where these species could be introduced.
“Through discussion we can arrive at fruitful conclusions that will add value to the environment in Nigeria and that is what we hope for.
“I think climate change is a major dimension that we should focus on in Nigeria, especially around the Lake Chad Basin, where a big number of people are calling it home.
“Through initiatives and mutual understanding of situations in the Lake Chad Basin, I believe climate change is something we can work on.
“Along with other economic and humanitarian supports, this could be initiated along this line”.
Speaking, Dr Ibrahim Goni, Conservator-General of National Park Service, commended the discussion to be right step towards tackling issues about climate change and endangered species in Nigeria.
According to Goni, it will be a long process, because we have to meet the Nile areas of international conventional treaties on endangered species of flora and fauna that is involved.
“Once Nigeria is cleared, we can bring in certain animals in ways that we need, particularly in Chad Basin National Park.
“Inventory shows that endangered species were once in Chad Basin National Park, it was because of human activities their populations decimate.
“So reintroducing them is a good idea, just alike we have started with UAE; they have given us launching pad which we intend to build up,” Ibrahim said.
He promised to brief the Minister of Environment on outcome of their discussion for furtherance of the goals.
He, however, appealed to the Federal Government to strengthen the capacity in area of wild life conservation services, to achieve targets.
The event featured a film presentation titled “Back to the Wild” and tree planting campaign led by Al-Taffaq to stem fights against climate change.