The National Park Service says it is committed to protecting the ecological integrity of the nation and preserve its unique heritages in the various ecosystems.
Dr Ibrahim Goni, the Conservator-General, National Park Service, said this during a courtesy visit to the Director-General, Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) on Tuesday in Abuja.
Goni said that the service was also working toward increasing the areas under protection through the establishment of additional National Parks.
He said that the service was in the forefront of mitigating climate change, drought and desertification in the country, adding that it also played a pivotal role in the amelioration of ravaging erosion and floods.
“Climate and nature are intricately linked, so we will not be able to solve the global loss of nature without solving the climate crisis.
“In turn, when we restore nature, we create healthy ecosystem which locks away more carbon and helps stabilise our climate.’’
The C-G said the service would continue to step up plans by bringing more actors to the table to save Nigeria from the imminent effects of climate change and to safeguard the ecosystem.
Goni said that the purpose of the visit was to solicit the support of the NTA in educating the public on the need to promote the service for the health of the nation.
The C-G said that the service had put in efforts to turnaround the parks for ecotourism and also ensure maximum security for tourists.
“Apart from the climate change mitigation, our dream is to turn the seven national parks into a tourism hub, and we want every Nigerian to join hands with the service to make our parks greater in 2020.
“The ongoing revamp at the parks across the country is to improve the quality of services and we will not relent in the efforts to keep improving the fortunes of the parks.
“Our growing collaboration with you is to advertise our parks in Nigeria to the world which is a key part of our agenda.
“Our visit today is to encourage Nigerians to think of contributions they could make that will help mitigate the effect of climate change and to also increase their patronage of our parks.’’
Goni said that the present level of commitment and awareness to conservation and preservation of the nation’s national heritage was low.
He urged patriotic Nigerians to join hands with the service in taking the parks to global standards to effectively compete with its counterparts around the world.
“Collective effort remains the panacea for dealing with the menace of climate change.
“We must make conscious and concerted effort to safeguard our environment and make it safer and healthier for all; we must join hands and speak with one voice in order to build the nation of our dream.
“We are working to preserve and protect the nation’s natural heritage and the cultural edifices that memorialise them across generations, and if we do not join hands to preserve them, a lot of them could become extinct.”
Goni assured that all the parks had facilities that would make visitors comfortable.
Mrs Fatima Bada, the Executive Director, Finance, who represented Alhaji Yakubu Muhammed, the D-G of NTA, promised to give the service all the necessary support to achieve its mandate.
“You have come to the right place and your efforts of passing your messages to the public will be supported by us.’’
She advised the service to work together with the News Department to be able to get the maximum benefit.(NAN)