Cameroon: Parliamentary Information Day - Lawmakers Brainstorm On Niger Basin Dev't

Major potentials and benefits to be gained should the zone be well protected and exploited were discussed by stakeholders during the get-together on August 16 in Yaounde.

Fighting deforestation, protecting the ecosystem and the durable management of natural resources remain a focal point for most governments and institutions. It is against this backdrop that some officials of the Niger Basin Authority met with Parliamentarians on August 16, 2019 to exchange information about the zone and ideas on its preservation for humanity. In a presentation by the Officer in charge of Monitoring and Evaluation of the Niger Basin Authority, Ramani Traore, the Niger river flows through nine African countries including Cameroon, Benin, Burkina Faso, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Guinea, Mali, Niger, and Nigeria. with the water body being very active in seven of the countries. While highlighting the enormous potentials of the river and its advantages to the environment, he said the river and its environs is host to several endangered species which need to be protected.

Highlighting some of the difficulties encountered in the preservation of the natural jewel, he noted that the institution faces financial challenges with contributions from member States usually coming in late making time effective and efficient work difficult. The expert noted that there are over 115 monitoring centres in member countries responsible for relaying information. Cameroon unfortunately since August 15, 2015, according to him, has not regularly been sharing information on its area within the Niger Basin, making it difficult for them to notify authorities and the population in case of a potential danger. "Harmonising national and regional texts sometimes poses problems as well," he stated, adding that the population to an extent remains adamant to respecting certain environmental friendly principles.

The communications expert of the Niger Basin Authority, Kaya Abdoulaye, said the new dynamic on the Parliamentary Information Day institute by the Executive Secretariat seeks the sensitisation and information of the population and necessary stakeholders on implementation measures for improving the lives of persons who live around the Niger Basin.

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