//Godwin Ekosin, Kaduna//
KADUNA state Governor, Nasir El-Rufai over the weekend began distribution of 1.4 million seedlings of economic trees across the 255 political wards that make up the 23 local government councils of the state.
The seedlings, which according to the governor were carefully selected and being distributed to the three senatorial zones based on climatic condition and topography of the areas among others thus; moringa and neem to be planted at zone 1, moringa, neem and oil palm at zone 2 while banana, oil palm and moringa would be grown in zone 3.
Speaking through the Director, Forestry department in the State’s Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Mr. Anthony Kachiro, El-Rufai said to ensure the success of ‘Keep Kaduna Green (KKG)’ programme launched in June this year, all classes of traditional rulers as well as women and youths would be productively engaged.
It would be recalled that on Thursday, 30th June this year, President Mohammadu Buhari through Minister of Environment, Amina Muhammed while flagging-off the project in Kaduna, described environment as one of the six core pillars of nation’s economy, thus underscoring the importance to the change agenda of his administration.
President Buhari had on that day said the KKG initiative further underscored the importance of taking climate action and creating jobs for teeming youths, “this is a worthy and timely project given the challenges and opportunities it provides to Nigeria. Nigeria has the highest rate of deforestation in the world. It is on record that the rate of deforestation is about 3.5 per cent per annum. The implication of this is that about 350,000 to 400,000 hectares of forest, equivalent to 576 million trees are lost annually”.
It may not be unconnected to this commendations that the state government is seriously showing special interest in agricultural related projects aiming at securing environment, creating jobs, ensuring food security and increasing the state chances of raising her Internally Generated Revenue (IGR).
About 1,000 team of supervisors have been trained to distribute 3 million seedlings to all the wards across the state, targeting 26,000 women and youths in nurturing the trees to maturity stage and also harvest.