By Oluwatoyin Adegoke
A Research Expert, Dr Ibraheem Lawal has advocated deliberate efforts to promote sustainable tree planting and cultivation of medicinal plants in Nigeria, with a view to boosting the nation’s economy.
Dr Lawal gave the advice in Abeokuta at a workshop on tree planting, Agroforestry and medicinal plants cultivation for economic empowerment and climate amelioration, put together by the African Biodiversity and Traditional Knowledge Research and Development Project.
The Director, Biomedicinal Research Centre, Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria, Ibadan Oyo State emphasized that planting of economic tree would help to increase agricultural productivity and create job opportunities for the teeming youths
In a remark, the President, African Biodiversity and Traditional Knowledge Research and Development Project, Alhaji Shuaibu Aro said one thousand plank sellers drawn from across the 20 local government areas of Ogun State were being supported to plant about one million trees through the initiative.
Alhaji Aro pointed out that the 10 – year lifespan support would enable participants to plant trees for different uses, including timbers, rubber latex or pulp and paper as well as seeds, fruits, while also planting arable crops and medicinal plants for the purpose of food production and regeneration of endangered medicinal plants.
The project facilitator said the organisation would adopt agricultural innovation for food and cash to mitigate poverty and support the government in meeting the desired national development goals
Also, the National Coordinator of the project ,Chief Taoreed Adefolakan disclosed that the state government had provided lands for the planting of the economic trees.
Chief Adefolakan who expressed optimism that the initiative would reduce restiveness among the youths said the first phase of the programme would target plank sellers in the state.