The TetFund Centre of Excellence in Biodiversity Conservation and Ecosystem Management, University of Lagos (UNILAG), on Thursday, May 25, 2023, commemorated this year’s International Day of Biological Diversity, by hosting a sensitisation event to emphasise the imperativeness of a protective attitude from humans towards all kinds of animals and the environment.
With the theme “From Agreement to Action: Build Back Biodiversity”, the programme which featured theoretical and practical sessions took place at the Faculty of Science Boardroom. It was targeted at building biodiversity awareness from the grassroots hence the participants were made up of pupils of UNILAG Staff School, UNILAG Women Society (ULWS) Primary School and International School, Lagos (ISL).
They were all charged on the importance of environmental preservation with a view to promoting the symbiotic interaction between man and nature comprising the air, plants and all kinds of animals.
In her remarks to flag off the event, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academics and Research), Professor Bola Oboh expressed concern over the continued threats to nature by human activities including urbanization and infrastructural developments.
Professor Oboh who also doubles as the Director of the TetFund Centre of Excellence in Biodiversity Conservation and Ecosystem Management, UNILAG, identified the global climate change as evident in the extent of environmental degradation arising from flooding and erosion, to the abusive usurpation of nature by humans, a development, which she said, requires attitudinal reorientation from all stakeholders especially the younger generation.
While attributing the recent COVID-19 pandemic to some of nature’s extreme reactions against humans, Professor Oboh advocated conservation and promotion of sustainable environment-friendly practices with a view to rejuvenating biodiversity.
The 2023 International Day of Biological Diversity programme saw the participants being taken on an expedition from the Faculty of Science through the Engineering/Science Link Bridge to the UNILAG Lagoon front and Water fountain.
According to the Convener, Dr Akeem Kadiri, the purpose of the sightseeing tour was to bring the participants closer to nature, to aid their understanding and appreciation of all of nature’s elements.
Dr. Kadiri charged the participants to be friendlier towards all shades of plants and animals, avoid indiscriminate handling of refuse and shun all acts capable of harming or destroying any element of nature as such could be disruptive and injurious to humans in the long run.
Also, in her remarks, the Chair, Local Organizing Committee of the 2023 International Day of Biological Diversity event, Dr. Temitope Onuminya advised the participants to see every action and inaction towards nature as an investment which will yield returns in due course.
Also in a similar remark, Co-convener of the International Biodiversity Day Celebration, Dr. Fatsuma Olaleru implored the pupils to be mindful of the environment, tread cautiously and do all they can to promote biodiversity.