On Saturday, President Muhammadu Buhari met with his Chadian counterpart, Marshal Idris Itno Deby in Abuja, and pointed out how transfer of water into the Lake Chad can help curb illegal migration of youths to Europe.
Buhari noted that over 30 million people have been directly and indirectly affected by a shallow and debris-filled Lake Chad.
A statement issued by Femi Adesina, Special Adviser to the President (Media and Publicity) quoted him as saying: “It is imperative that there be water transfer to the Lake Chad from the Congo Basin, so that the people can resume their normal lives.”
He added: “I’ve been engaging with the relevant stakeholders in Africa and beyond, on why we need to recharge Lake Chad. Nigeria will benefit more, but it is also advantageous to everyone,’’ President Buhari added.
He appreciated Chad for its role in curbing insurgency in the region, particularly the Boko Haram challenge.
“We appreciate what you are doing on security. When I first came to office in 2015, I came to see you, as well as leaders of other neighbouring countries, because it makes sense to be in the good books of our neighbours.”
President Buhari also wished President Idris Deby well in the forthcoming general elections scheduled to hold in Chad in April.
Lake Chad is a historically large, shallow, endorheic lake in central Africa, which has varied in size over the centuries. According to the Global Resource Information Database of the United Nations Environment Programme, it shrank by as much as 95% from about 1963 to 1998.