The Director-General of the Nigerian Conservation Foundation, Dr. Muhtari Aminu-Kano has released a statement saying that erosion may soon wipe off the Lekki Conservation Centre in Lagos.
From its origin and establishment in 1990 by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF), Lekki Conservation Centre (LCC) has grown into one of Africa’s prominent and most-diverse urban Nature Parks due to its high species richness making it one of the most popular tourist destinations in Lagos State. Boasting a wide array of activities including; the famous 401 metre canopy walkway, family park, tree house, nature station, bird hide, floor games amongst others, it is a great spot for get-togethers, gatherings and event dates, and I am sure at some point your social media feeds have been flooded with pictures of people having a good time here.
Now the question is could this famous site be approaching its last days?
For those not familiar with Erosion, it is the action of surface processes (such as water flow or wind) that remove soil, rock or dissolved material from one location on the Earth’s crust, and then transport it to another location i.e. the washing away of the topsoil.
In the statement, Aminu-Kano told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that sand filling, dredging, and land reclamation activities in various communities in the area have directly threatened the existence of the park.
According to him, the development has endangered various animal and plant species in the reserve, requiring the urgent intervention of the Lagos and Federal Governments to save the reserve.
He blamed the possible extinction on developments in the area stating that LCC is one of the few places with a dense population of trees and animals, and buildings have raised the land above it making it an easy target for erosion as the rains flood areas in the center. Though there have been attempts to improve the drainage in the center, he also stated that another cause of erosion is the on-going protection of the Bar beach shoreline and land reclamation activities around Maroko and Lekki, stating that water is finding its level back on the conservation area.
He appealed for more support from the State and Federal Governments to boost tourism at the park, lamenting that forests and game reserves in the country were facing deforestation, due to human activities, and lauded Gov. Akinwunmi Ambode for providing some facilities and constructing a major perimeter road to facilitate access to the park.
The future of the conservation center will be determined in the nearest future, hopefully, a permanent solution will be provided and the center will continue to be a premier tourist destination bringing joy to nature lovers that have the pleasure of visiting the place.