To further strengthen its operations aimed at controlling gully erosion in Nigeria, the World Bank, through its Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Project (NEWMAP), has extended its services to 12 states.
The states are Akwa Ibom, Bauchi, Borno, Delta, Gombe, Kano, Katsina, Kogi, Nasarawa, Plateau, Oyo and Sokoto states.
A statement signed by an official of the Aries Concept Nigeria Limited, a communication consulting firm for the bank, Bankole Ebisemiju, said the states will benefit from funds made available to NEWMAP by the Federal and State Governments, international and donor agencies for the eight -year task.
In the statement, the Task Team leader of the bank, Dr. Amos Abu, was quoted as saying that the project will be financed through a Strategic Investment Loan (SIL), of $508.59 million, $500 million received from the International Development Association (IDA).
Other sources of funding include, a concessional Loan from the Global Environmental Facility (GEF), Trust Fund and Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) grants of $8,59 million and counterpart contribution from the Federal Government and participating states to the tune of $150 million.
The Federal Government, he said contributed 60 per cent, while the states will gives 40 per cent in total counterpart sum.
It stated: “Twelve additional states have recently become partners with the Nigeria Erosion and Watershed Management Project (NEWMAP) in combating environmental and land degradation. The states include; Akwa Ibom, Bauchi, Borno Delta, Gombe, Kano, Katsina, and Kogi. Others are Nasarawa, Oyo, Plateau and Sokoto.
“It should be recalled that this multisector and multi-scale project, with Innovative new approach to preventing and reversing land degradation, initially commenced with gully erosion sites that threaten infrastructure and livelihoods in seven states: Abia, Anambra, Cross River, Ebonyi, Edo Enugu and Imo, referred to as first mover states.
“Presently, its activities have scaled out to the aforementioned 12 states, now making a total of 19.”
While briefing key officials of the seven states where the Bank’s Erosion and Watershed Intervention Programme is currently being executed, Dr Abu noted , that the Project was in response to the challenges and the emerging Land degradation and environmental insecurity facing the first mover states.