United Nations, UN, Deputy Secretary-General, Amina Mohammed has attributed the rise of Boko Haram terrorism in Northeast Nigeria largely to the drying up of the once thriving Lake Chad.
Mohammed stated this in Stockholm in her remarks to the opening plenary of 2018 World Water Week with theme: ‘Water, Ecosystems and Human Development, at the Heart of the Global Agendas’.
The deputy UN scribe recounted her experience as Minister of Environment of Nigeria and Chair of Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council.According to her, she saw first-hand the disastrous human consequences of badly-managed water resources and ecosystems, noting the importance of protecting the environment and conserving resources for sustainable development.
“I was raised in north-eastern Nigeria, where lack of access to clean water and sanitation is a major challenge”, NAN quoted her as saying.“Lake Chad was once the chief source of economic activity for this region, providing food and economic opportunities to nearly 30 million people.
“Today, the lake has shrunk by 90 per cent. Some predict it could disappear entirely by the end of this century.“This drying of the lake and the advance of desertification in the north has disrupted everything, from trade routes to agriculture and fishing.
“It has impacted food security and health, increasing the risk of waterborne diseases. It is causing poverty by taking away farmers’ livelihoods. And it has a gender dimension, contributing to low levels of school enrollment among girls.
“Taken together, all these factors have contributed to increased insecurity in a region already affected by violent extremism.
“I believe the rise of Boko Haram is inextricably linked with poor water management. And the solution to conflict in the region must include equitable ways of using water resources.”
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