By; SANI ALIYU, Zaria
A former Minister of Interior, Lt. General Abdulrahaman Bello Dambazau has said that Nigeria is among the countries most vulnerable to the impact of climate change.
He stated this in a lecture he delivered at the 50th anniversary of Class of 1970 of Barewa College, Zaria held at the College Assembly Hall.
General Dambazau said the situation has massively affected the agricultural sector, especially in crops production, fisheries, animal rearing among others.
According to him, these are key areas in which the youth can be gainfully employed to contribute to national development rather than this negative impacts of climate change has exacerbated youths unemployment.
The former Minister noted that combined with youth bulge and the already charged atmosphere of graduate unemployment, the impact of climate change has made the idle youth population engage in violent entrepreneurship.
On the farmers – herders conflicts in Nigeria especially in the North, General Dambazau said it is as a result of effects of climate change.
“The correlation between climate change and conflicts is no longer in doubt”.
He said rapid increase in population has resulted in youth bulge, climate change has led to land degradation due to desertification, erosion and flood, a situation that has put pressure on land and water, leading to conflicts between farmers and herders over control of land and water resources.
“Sometimes these conflicts are given the coloration of ethnicity and religion particularly when they occur in the North Central geopolitical zone, thereby creating sharp division among the youth who are always on standby to be used by warring sides to perpetrate all kinds of violent acts.”
General Dambazau pointed out that climate change has also complicated the traditional life of Fulani herders which is further compounded by elite land grabbing that led to the situation in Zamfara State, which made uneducated, unskilled and unemployed Fulani youth into cattle rustling, kidnapping, banditry and armed robbery.