On March 28th, 2023, the Nigerian Senate granted approval for the creation of 10 new National Parks within the country. The decision was made following the adoption of a motion on the National Park declaration Order 22, which was presented by Sen. Gobir Abdullahi (APC-Sokoto) during plenary.
Abdullahi explained that President Muhammadu Buhari had sent a request to the Senate on November 16th, 2022, seeking the Senate’s agreement to the National Park declaration Order, 2022, in compliance with section 18 of the National Park Service Act 2004. The proposed order aimed to establish ten additional national parks based on thorough feasibility studies and environmental impact assessments in twelve selected forests and game reserves located in different states of the federation.
The list of proposed parks includes:
- Alawa National Park in Niger State,
- Apoi National Park in Bayelsa State,
- Edumenun National Park in Bayelsa State,
- Galgore National Park in Kano State,
- Hadejia Wetland National Park in Jigawa State,
- Kempe National Park in Kwara State,
- Kogo National Park in Katsina State,
- Marhi National Park in Nasarawa State,
- Oba Hill National Park in Osun State, and
- Pandam National Park in Plateau State.
According to Abdullahi, the establishment of these additional parks is crucial for the regulation of Nigeria’s unique ecosystem, particularly the fauna and flora ecosystems. “The establishment will address the fast rate of disappearance and degradation of Nigeria’s forest, achieve and develop adequate tourism infrastructure in line with international best practices,” he said. He also emphasized that the creation of these parks would help protect and preserve Nigeria’s biodiversity and natural heritage.
The approval of 10 new national parks in Nigeria is a significant development that will play a vital role in protecting the country’s unique ecosystem and natural heritage. With the fast rate of disappearance and degradation of Nigeria’s forests, these parks will serve as a vital tool in regulating the use of the country’s flora and fauna ecosystems.
The establishment of these parks will also provide an opportunity for the development of adequate tourism infrastructure in line with international best practices, potentially boosting the country’s tourism industry.
Photo: Francesco Ungaro