Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has implored environment activists, community leaders and local councils to deepen the crusade to preserve the pristine features in Nigeria’s forest belt, noting that more stakeholders are needed in the crusade for the protection of the country’s unique flora and fauna.
The governor made the call on the occasion of the commemoration of the World Biological Diversity Day marked every May 22, by the United Nations and its various organs.
According to him, “On this day, it is important to stress the need to conserve nature and preserve the defining features of our pristine flora and fauna, not just for the sake of humans but to sustain diverse ecosystem and other organisms that benefit from our peculiar biological makeup.
He maintained that it was time to recognise the roles of local communities and local governments in driving government policies on the protection and preservation of our natural world.
“Most times the disruptions recorded in biological communities result from the poor knowledge of the long term value of the balance in our ecosystem.
“The current danger posed by human activities can be mitigated if more stakeholders are identified and carried along in the campaign to save the diverse, interconnection and harmonious relationship among the various animals, plants, the physical environment and other elements of the ecosystem.”
He described the theme for the 2018 celebration, Celebrating 25 years of Action on Biodiversity, as germane, adding that the partnership with ProForest will enable the state government properly manage and conserve the defining features of its biodiversity.
He said the state government was working with the Federal Government to preserve the Okomu Forest Reserve, noting that the Okomu National Park is a national asset that must be promoted to boost tourism receipts for the state and the country at large.
“The commemoration also demands that we synergise to protect wildlife and other elements of the ecosystem that benefit from conserving the environment,” he added.
According to the United Nations, “2018 marks the 25th anniversary of the entry into force of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Since entering into force, the Convention has been implemented through the vision and leadership displayed by countries, non-governmental and inter-governmental organisations, indigenous peoples and local communities, the scientific community and individuals alike.”
“The results are considerable: the development of scientific guidance for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity for biomes around the world, the entry into force of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilisation and the creation and implementation of national biodiversity strategies and action plans.”