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World Ranger Day: FG advocates more workforce, protection for rangers



World Ranger Day: FG advocates more workforce, protection for rangers

The Federal Government on Thursday called for more workforce and protection of park rangers across the country to achieve global biosafety framework.

Alhaji Ibrahim Yusufu, Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Environment made the call at the commemoration of the 2023 World Ranger Day celebration.

Yusufu who was represented by Dr Moses Ama, the National Coordinator and Focal Person, Programme, Forestry Department in the Ministry said that the theme of the celebration “Ranger: The natural Solution to Achieving the 30 by 30 Biodiversity Targets” is apt.

“In order to achieve the 30 by 30 target of the Global Biodiversity Framework no doubt hinges on having a workforce of rangers that is sufficient in number, diverse, motivation and quality enough to carry out its responsibility with precision and effective impact.

“This is because the rangers as essential planetary health professional workers are central to the success of any environmental and wildlife policy or target globally.

“On daily basis, rangers in Nigeria undertake difficult task of safeguarding our diverse ecosystems such as Forest Reserves, Game Reserves, Biosphere Reserves and our Parks. In specific terms,” he said.

The permanent secretary said that National Parks across the globe are bedeviled by serious anthropogenic challenges which may vary in intensity from country to country.

“Some of the challenges include illegal hunting, logging, grazing, mining, pandemics (Covid-19 of recent) and exploitation of Non-Timber Forest Products. These human activities often resulted in conflicts with perpetrators resorting to violent attacks on park rangers.

“However, there is a new dimension to these challenges which is occasioned by the activities of organised criminals such as terrorists, bandits, kidnappers, cattle rustlers, and other non – state actors.

“The situation has extremely become worrisome as these set of criminals ruthlessly attack park rangers with sophisticated weapons,” he said.

Dr Ibrahim Goni, Conservator General, National Parks Service (NPS) said that there was need for deliberate and conscious efforts to improve the quality of the environment.

“It is important to note that a lot of rangers have been lost or injured in the line of duty to protect our natural heritage and treasure,” Gone said.

Mr Chris Galliers, President International Rangers Federation said that the Federation
recognises rangers as essential health professionals for the critical tasks they perform.

Galliers who was represented by Dr Mohammed Kabir, Assistant Conservator-General of NPS said that rangers offer services such as: protection, conservation, biodiversity monitoring and visitor services.

“The sector already suffers from a shortage of capacity, so to meet the 30 by 30 target, the number of rangers needs to increase to 1.5 million,” he said.

Lt.-Gen. Taoreed Lagbaja, Chief of Army Staff commended NPS for its efforts in conserving and protecting the forest as well as other conservatives.

Lagbaja who was represented by
Maj.-Gen. Koko Isoni also assured NPS of his support in carrying out its operations by protecting the lives of its rangers when the need arises.

Mr Geoffrey Nacha, the Country Manager, Africa Nature Investors also promised that his organisation would continue to assist NPS in its operations.

The occasion was marked with parades by the rangers, symbolic planting of trees, stripping and reassembling of guns, the presentation of award to outstanding rangers and tokens to the families of deceased rangers.


LASTMA, others combat Ilupeju industrial fire outbreak



The operatives of the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA) and other emergency responders at early hour on Saturday combated an industrial fire outbreak at Mega Plastics Company at No.4, Ilupeju Bypass.

Mr Taofiq Adebayo, the Director, Public Affairs and Enlightenment Department of LASTMA, made the disclosure in a statement in Lagos on Saturday.

Adebayo stated that the industrial fire outbreak took place at Mega Plastics Company at No.4, Ilupeju Bypass beside Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Ilupeju area of Lagos.

“The Traffic Officer of LASTMA, Mr Ayo Olaosebikan (Falcon) of Zone 21, confirmed that LASTMA rescue team arrived at the scene of the industrial fire outbreak around at 6:30a.m. before other emergency responders were contacted by LASTMA.

“Immediately we arrived at the scene of the industrial fire, we quickly informed other emergency responders particularly the Lagos State Fire, Rescue Services and the Nigerian Police.

“The causes of industrial fire could not be immediately ascertained, he said.
Olaosebikan noted that preliminary investigation revealed that the storage and factory section of the petrochemical company were seriously affected by the fire outbreak.

According to him, emergency responders on ground include Federal and State Fire Services, policemen and LASTMA Response Unit.

Olaosebikan said that neither injury nor death had been recorded.

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NGO takes free medical outreach to Plateau community



GDG Wellness Initiative, an NGO, on Saturday offered free medical services to no fewer than 400 indigent persons in Gyel community, Jos South Local Government Area of Plateau.

Mr Gyang Dung-Gyang, founder of the initiative told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the exercise was his little way of giving back to the society that made him.

He said that he was spurred by the plight of the people and the urgent need to reach out to them, in view of the current economic realities and its implications on their health.

Dung-Gyang said that he had been organising such outreaches annually, adding that the current hardship occasioned by the removal of fuel subsidy had made this year’s outing unique.

“It’s my heart desire and passion to reach out to the vulnerable and the needy in the society.

“And it’s not just this, we have been able to give scholarship to some students, with some already graduates.

“Today, we have planned to treat a minimum of 400 persons but from the way it is going, it may exceed that number,” he stated.

The outreach Team Lead, Mr Pam Chong, listed some of the medical services to include testing and treatment of patients for aliments such as malaria, hepatitis B & C, high blood pressure, diabetes among others.

Chong, a pharmacist, told NAN that the medical team comprised of doctors, nurses, lab scientists and pharmacists.
He said cases that they were unable to handle would be referred to hospitals that could handle them.

The team lead said that they have sufficient drugs to treat over 400 patients.

Mr Ishaya Pam, Vice President, Gyel Development Association of Jos South LGA, lauded GDG Wellness for the gesture, which he believed would improve the health and wellbeing of the people.
Pam prayed God to bless the organisers of the outreach to continue to impact the lives of the less privileged.

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