By Gabriel Enogholase

Pope Benedict XVI

THE Catholic Church in Nigeria will on Sunday in Benin flagged-off the 2011 Lenten Campaign with the theme, “Sustaining Our Environment for Integral Human Development”.

The Benin Province Coordinator, Justice Development and Peace/Caritas Commission (JDPC), Rev. Father Fidelis Arhedo, who disclosed this yesterday in the Edo state capital, said the Church has chosen the environment as the focus of this year Lenten Campaign so as to prevent further damage to the earth, particularly in Nigeria.

“In our focus on the environment and climate change, we scrutinize our government about our natural resources. We critically examined the different natural resources for the integral human development. The emphasis on Nigeria especially in the area of oil and gas and how this has impacted on the people, particularly on the lives of the people in the production line of Nigerians in the Niger Delta region”.

“For your information, there is no state in this country that has no natural resources but the attention of government is on oil and gas. The people in the zone of production have been impoverished and abandoned. The officers of the govern. Besides, he disclosed that the issue of Agriculture and Food scarcity will also be focused upon during the campaign and lamented that Nigeria has neglected Agriculture following the discovering of oil in the seventies.

Saying that there must be a conscious effort to promote and preserve food production in the country, Rev. Father Arhedo attention should be given to the effect of forest degradation and forest migration as a result of climate change , adding that, “we must pay attention to dangers inherent in deforestation and proper effect should be made to prevent them”.

He further disclosed that the Campaign will address the issue of water scarcity in the country as its wastage or misuse has resulted in the spread of common diseases such as dysentery, cholera among others.


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