FAO Establishes 3 Stove Production Centers in Borno... As it Trains100 Workers on Stove Production

By Ahmed Abu, The Nigerian Voice, Maiduguri

Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has established three fuel efficient stove production centres in Borno state to curtail felling of trees in the Sahara desert .

It also trained about one hundred trainees or workers in the production of fuel efficient stoves for the three centres that it has established in Maiduguri, Konduga and Jere LGAs of Borno state.

The FAO Deputy Country Representative, Mr Macki Tall disclosed this at the inauguration of the Fuel Efficient Stove Production Centres at Gongulon area of Jere Local Government Area.

According to him, the measure was part of a comprehensive programmes initiated and outlined by the FAO to reduce dependence on firewood, to encourage development of alternative energies and to provide sustainable livelihood to the rural communities.

He said: "To achieve this goal, the FAO has partnered with Borno State Ministry of Environment and the International Centre for Energy, Environment and Development, to establish three production centres for fuel-efficient stove production.

“In the first stage, the project foresees to distribute at least 5,000 locally produced fuel-efficient stoves in the three local government areas to households with very limited access to firewood.

“This will help them to reduce the amount of firewood needed to meet their daily cooking need,” Tall said.

The Deputy country representative further explained that the programme was designed to control also deforestation and desert encroachment while pointing out that over 407,000 hectares of forest resources have been deflated annually through tree felling.

He also noted that even those people that were engaged in firewood collection were prone to attacks and abduction by Boko Haram insurgent's.

Tall added that women and children were also exposed to eye and respiratory infections through inhalation of harmful firewood smoke among other skin disease.

The Speaking at the occasion, the Borno State Commissioner for Environment, Alhaji Kaka Shehu, said the initiative would go a long way in protecting forest resources across the state.

Represented by Alhaji Mala Barma, the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, he added that the state government had adopted proactive measures to discourage the use of firewood with a view to fast track the implementation of the Great Green Wall Project.

“Our forest has been subjected to large scale degradation due to activities of the insurgents over the past years.

“Owing to the strangulation of businesses and economic activities as a result of the insurgency, the communities took to wood logging as a means of livelihood, and the situation has been a great concern to the government.

“For the FAO to come up with this laudable initiative for the establishment of production centres for locally produced fuel efficient stove, is a welcome development,” Barma said.