At ATCAF 2023, Experts Advocate Creation Of National Park In Ekiti State

The Federal Government of Nigeria has been called upon to create a National Park in Ekiti State
This advocacy emerged as the aggregate submission of various speakers at the opening ceremony of the Ist Africa Tourism Climate Action Forum, ATCAF organized by Sayari Dunia Sustainable Tourism Foundation powered by Mrs. Abigael Olagbaye in Ado Ekiti, Ekiti State Nigeria on Friday 24 Nov 2024 with the theme: Decarbonisation and Green Industrialisation of Tourism and Trade
The opening ceremony of the forum held at Bishop Adetiloye Hall, Trade Fair, Ado Ekiti commanded the presence of the Conservator-General of Nigeria, Dr Ibrahim Goni, who was represented by Mr Emmanuel Ntuyang
The Conservator-General commended the Governor of Ekiti State for his developmental strides and his earnest concern for the protection of the environment.
He said that Governor Biodun Abayomi Oyebanji has placed Ekiti State in the foremost position of the few States in Nigeria which is conscious about adding value to the Planet Earth.
The Conservator – General -assured the Governor of rendering to Ekiti State any support for the protection and conservation of Ekiti forest.

The Conservator-General’s speech seemed to have stoked the embers of conscious advocacy in the minds of the experts who addressed the guests which include, the representative of the President, Federation of Tourism Association in Nigeria, FTAN, Dr. Abioye Adedipe, Hon. Commissioner for Environment, Ekiti Hon Tosin Aluko, State represented by Mr. Tunde, Amb Wale Ojo – Lanre, Esq, Director – General, Bureau of Tourism Development, Ekiti State, a Green Growth and Travelism expert, Executive Secretary, Ekiti State Forestry Commission – Mr. Mathew Famuagun, Dr. Akinyemi Akinyugha SSA to the Ekiti state Governor on Green Economy on Climate Change and Tope Owolabi, an Ekiti born US-based environmental evangelist in their various goodwill speech referred to the need for the Federal Government to create a National Park in Ekiti.

. They pointed out that this act will not only add value to the various efforts at protecting Ekiti’s environment but also further strengthen the act to protect and preserve the rich biodiversity and natural heritage of the state while promoting ecotourism and sustainable development.

They believe a National Park will be helpful to Ekiti which possesses a remarkable diversity of ecosystems, including lush forests, wetlands, unique rock formations, and a variety of flora and fauna which however being increasingly threatened by human encroachment, deforestation, and habitat destruction.

The proposed National Park would serve as a sanctuary for the numerous endangered and endemic species in the area, providing them with a safe habitat to thrive and ensuring their long-term survival. It would also generate economic opportunities for the community, attracting nature lovers, researchers, and tourists from around the world.

The proposed National Park they argued has the potential to create jobs, boost local businesses, and contribute to the overall economic growth of Ekiti State as well as
enhance Nigeria’s commitment to environmental conservation, aligning with international efforts to protect biodiversity and fight against climate change. It would be a profound step towards achieving sustainable development goals and preserving natural heritage for future generations.

The experts strongly urge the government of Ekiti State, as well as relevant federal authorities, to consider and support the creation of a National Park in Ekiti stating that by working together, they can ensure the protection and sustainable management of the state’s natural resources while fostering economic growth and promoting environmental stewardship.
The convener of ATCAF, Mrs Abigael Olagbaye said her foundation decided to host ATCAF in Ekiti to call the global attention of environmentalists and conservationists to the urgent need to protect Ekiti’s natural heritage, flora and fauna before any irredeemable damage.

” For the past three days, we have successfully held a Tree- Planting ceremony, and a cycling competition to emphasize the adoption of fuelless objects for promoting tourism, we have engaged the youths and we will interact with our women tomorrow all in alignment with the theme of this year’s forum’
She expressed gratitude to the Governor of Ekiti State, the conservator-general of the Federation, the Ekiti Commissioner for Environment, the DG Bureau of Tourism Development, Ekiti State, DG, Ekiti State Community Relations, sponsors of the program, and others for their immeasurable contributions to the success of the ATCAF 2023 events in Ekiti State.

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