Naomi Gabriel —
The Director, Technical Programme of the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF), Dr. Joseph Onoja at a two-day Anambra Forest-Landscape Restoration Action Plan Workshop in Awka, the state capital said yesterday that plans are underway to plant between 45,000 and 70,000 trees in Anambra State as part of the Natural Forestry Trust Fund (NFTF) mandate. The workshop was in collaboration with the Nnamdi Azikiwe University (NAU), Awka.
Onoja said that the planting of the trees was aimed at restoring a healthy ecosystem, promote nature conservation as well as reverse the trend of environmental devastation in the state.
“We all know the devastation that is happening in Anambra in terms of flooding, erosion and other environmental problems. We have also discovered that the root cause is habitat degradation, he said.
“So we are in partnership with NAU to hold this workshop and come up with a plan to advocate the buy-in of policy makers to stop and reverse the trend of the devastation. Also, as part of NFTF mandate to plant a number of trees across the country, we are looking at planting between 45,000 and 70, 000 trees in Anambra and some communities started indicating interest.
“At the end of the workshop, some officers will stay back to ensure this project is carried out in collaboration with communities, so they can take ownership of the trees when we leave,” he added.
Onoja said that trees promoted healthier ecosystem, which in turn ensured richer biodiversity, yielded greater benefits such as more fertile soils, nature-nurturing human atmosphere, among others.