Lake Chad: Buhari Makes Demands From International Community
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday in Abuja called for more commitment from the international community on redirecting water to the Lake Chad.
He warns that the about 40 million population in the region will pose adverse migration and security challenges to the world.
Receiving Letters of Credence from the High Commissioner of
Canada to Nigeria, Philip Baker, at the Presidential Villa, President Buhari
said the tragedy of the shrinking Lake Chad would continue to fuel more illegal
migrations, banditry and provide willing hands for terrorism since majority of
the people have lost their means of livelihood.
“In 1920’s, an academic rightly predicted that except there’s a redirection of water to Lake Chad, it will dry up.
“Now, whenever I go for any global meeting or visit a country, I will always draw the world’s attention to the adverse effect of climate change on the lake, and the resulting negative effects," he said.
President Buhari asked for the Canadian government's support to on-going efforts to divert water from the Congo River to the lake.
"Canada has the capacity to help us. The lake is now less than 10% of its normal size. A redirection will help our people from getting into the Mediterranean Sea," he added.
The President said Nigeria and Canada had good relations dating back to the early 60's when Nigeria gained independence, commending the country for "its vast resource utilisation and solid political background".
The Canadian High Commissioner commended President Buhari for providing leadership in the country, and championing the cause for the replenishing of the Lake Chad Basin, noting that the Canadian Governor General, Julie Payette, had presented a picture taken from space of the vanishing lake to the President when she visited recently.
Baker said more than 11, 000 Nigerians were studying in Canada, with many residing in the country, assuring the President that majority of the students return to build and invest their knowledge in the development of Nigeria.
The Canadian High Commissioner said he would work towards improving relations between both countries on migration, education, entrepreneurship training, mining, renewable energy and Information Technology.
President Buhari also received Letters of Credence from the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Wendy Campbell Laing and the Ambassador of Argentina to Nigeria, Maria Del Carmen Squeff.
He thanked the British government for the training support for the military in the North Eastern part of the country since it started fighting Boko Haram and to the Argentine government he stressed the need for both countries to move beyond the level of signing agreements to ensuring that issues of trade, sports, investments and agriculture get practical follow up for mutual benefit.
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