REPORT LAUNCH AND PANEL DISCUSSION
Venue: Nicon Luxury Hotel, Abuja FCT, Nigeria
Date: 15 May 2019
Time: 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM
The Lake Chad Basin is the scene of one of the first major international conflicts linked to climate change. Here, the Boko Haram insurgency has resulted in the killing of over twenty thousand people and created a massive humanitarian disaster with over three million displaced and many more in need of assistance. However, as one resident of Maiduguri, Borno State commented, “there was already massive displacement in northeastern Nigeria before the advent of Boko Haram”. The displacement of people and impoverishment resulted from ecological changes and inadequacies in institutional responses which enabled discontent to germinate.
Once Africa’s largest, the Lake Chad provided a lifeline for millions of people that lived within its basin in four countries – Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon. During the past decades, the Lake has almost dried up due in part to climate change. Major droughts in the 1970s and 1980s put pressure on the governments to implement dam and irrigation projects – many of which failed and also contributed to disrupting water flow to the Lake Chad. The depletion of Lake Chad has disrupted livelihoods and altered migration patterns.
Today, the admixture of a blighted ecology, Boko Haram insurgents, national militaries, armed vigilante groups, international humanitarian organisations in the Lake Chad Basin has created a complicated dynamic with implications for human rights, gender roles, movement of people, food security and the roles of government.
The report, Boiling Over: Global Warming, Hunger and Violence in the Lake Chad Basin addresses the need to integrate urgent humanitarian assistance to victims of conflict in the Lake Chad Basin with promoting ecological justice and sustained climate change adaptation measures.
Report Launch and Panel Discussion
The official launch of the report, Boiling Over: Global Warming, Hunger and Violence in the Lake Chad Basin will hold in Abuja, the federal capital of Nigeria on 15 May 2019. The event will bring together critical actors including federal and state government officials, representatives of foreign missions and UN agencies, national and international NGOs, community leaders and activists and scholars from Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad. The opening ceremonies and public presentation of the report shall be followed by a panel discussion of experts who will address the intersections of ecological and social problems affecting northeast Nigeria and the Lake Chad Basin in general.
Speakers during the Opening Ceremony
- Event Chair: Kole Shettima, Director, Africa Office, MacArthur Foundation
- Special Guest: Surveyor Suleiman Hassan, The Honourable Minister of Environment of Nigeria
- Special Guest: Canadian High Commissioner to Nigeria, represented by Daniel Arsenault, Head of Cooperation
- Representative of the Government of Borno State –Hajiya Yabawa Kolo, Executive Chair, Borno State Emergency Management Agency
- Vincent Omuga, Head of Coordination, United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Nigeria
- Modu Sulum, Managing Director, Chad Basin Development Authority
- Welcome: Isaac Osuoka, Director, Social Action; Geneviève Talbot, Program Officer, Development and Peace; Ambassador Ahmed Shehu, Civil Society Network of Lake Chad Basin
- Yerima Peter Tarfa, Director, Department of Climate Change, Federal Ministry of Environment
- Professor Ibrahim Umara, University of Maiduguri
- Rene Oyono, Climate Advisor, Citizens Governance Initiative, Cameroon
- Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, Executive Director, Women Advocate Research & Documentation Centre
- Tony Ojukwu, Executive Secretary, National Human Rights Commission of Nigeria
About the Organisers
Social Development Integrated Centre (Social Action) is a leading Nigerian NGO working to promote resource democracy, social justice and human rights with a focus on natural resources and livelihoods, climate change, trade and public budgets. Social Action works through research and monitoring, popular education and advocacy in solidarity with communities, activists and scholars.
Development and Peace – Caritas Canada has been implementing development projects in Nigeria since 1974. Its programmes focus on citizen democratisation and participation, conflict resolution and the promotion of a culture of peace, and natural resource management for the benefit of the population.
Isaac Botti, Social Action, Abuja, Nigeria, botti[at]saction.org
Genevieve Talbot, Development and Peace-Caritas Canada, gtalbot[at]devp.org