The acting secretary of the Education Secretariat, Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA), Alhaji Abdulrasak Leramo, has called for the mitigation of the effects of climate change on the environment, using legislation.
He made this call during a tree-planting project by a non-governmental organization, the Jam Intervention for Vulnerable Children and Climate Change Initiative (Jam-Initiative), at the Junior Secondary School, Zuba, Abuja.
Represented by the deputy director, school services, Dr. Emmanuel Shuaibu, Leramo explained that the legislation will come in handy to stop people from indiscriminate felling of trees.
According to him, anyone who cuts a tree indiscriminately should be fined or bag a jail term. “That will curtail indiscriminate cutting of trees, reduce the effects of climate change and protect our environment.”
He said planting trees and shrubs remained one of the ways to reduce the effects of climate change and control erosion in homes and communities.
“Trees are very important. we plant trees to provide shade which can save you from renting canopies. Most importantly, we plant trees to provide fruits [for us] to eat,” he said.
Leramo called out to the public to desist from felling trees and advised that, in situations where trees must be felled, five trees should be planted for every tree felled.
Also, he advised students to learn and imbibe the culture of tree-planting and take the message to their various homes and communities.
He called for all hands to be on deck to ensure that trees are planted and sustained.
Speaking earlier, the president, Jam- Initiative, Mrs. Josie Mudasiru educated the children on climate change.
She disclosed that climate change is a direct result of human activities and charged the students to become advocates of a safer, cleaner environment.
“We need to learn how to treat our environment with respect. stop indiscriminate waste disposal, felling of trees, re-channelling and blocking of streams and waterways; all these are affecting our ecosystem and resulted to [these] emergencies,” she said.
The students who were visibly excited with the knowledge gained, shared their experiences with our reporter.
A JSS 3 student at the school, Zubaida Ibrahim, who confessed to knowing very little about climate change before the exercise, said he had come to understand how negative environmental practices harm the environment.
Earlier, the school principal, Mallam Ibrahim Babba, appreciated the NGO for choosing the school and promised to ensure that the plants are maintained while urging the organisation to reach out to other schools in the FCT.
A total of 35 tree seedlings were planted by the students and teachers.