The National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency, NESREA, Monday, has incinerated 3914.08 tons of seized pangolin scales and 110 Kilograms of skin from other species which would serve as a deterrent warning to traffickers
The Director General NESREA, Aliyu Jauro said this during an Incineration event while addressing journalists amongst relevant stakeholders in Abuja
Jauro while speaking against wildlife trafficking in Nigeria, also harped on the need to protect the nation’s biodiversity.
He said, “This marks the beginning of the destruction of the six wildlife stockpiles, the stockpile we have some of them backdated to about 9years ago. We are sending a very strong message to those involved in the trafficking, to desist from illegal shipment, certainly we will go after them we will always confiscate these items and they will be prosecuted.
“The illegal wildlife trade is a serious threat to our natural heritage and global biodiversity. Nigeria is committed to playing its part in addressing this crisis. By destroying these pangolin scales alongside leopard, python and crocodile skins, we send a strong message that illegal wildlife trafficking will not be tolerated, and we will take every measure necessary to protect our unique ecosystems and endangered species, We are doing this in order to conserve our biodiversity, if we don’t do this, most of this animals will go extinct, this exercise will take 10days.
“Most of this illegal shipment uses Nigeria as a root to other countries, so it is not allowed and certainly people involved will be sanctioned appropriately; Henceforth, we hope Nigerians will be law abiding and they will stop contravening our regulations” Aliyu said.
The Minister of State for Environment, Iziaq Adekunle Salako, noted that our wildlife is not for sale and must be protected at all costs.
He said, “These seized items represent the past we leave behind,but the destruction signifies the future we are determined to build for our planet. The destruction of these seized items is a powerful statement of our resolve to protect our environment, conserve our wildlife, and combat the illegal trade that drives species to the brink of extinction; we pledge to strengthen our enforcement efforts, enhance our conservation programmes and raise public awareness about wildlife trafficking” he said.
The Environment, Science,Technology and Health Officer for the United Nations Abuja,Daniel Renna while laudikng the agency (NESREA) said, “This a historic day for Nigeria because Nigeria is a transit hub,for all of this kind of illegal wildlife products, they come from other parts of Africa and they are transit from here to Asia for instance, to places where they are used for medicine and other things, they are illegal because this are endangered species and so it is important that the Nigerian Government is actually making a statement now by incinerating almost four tons of pangolins scales. As far as the United States is concerned, we are very much supportive of tha5t, we are against wildlife trafficking especially in endangered species and so this is a big triumph today for Nigeria and for a region as a whole.”