A Unique Eco-tourism Destination in Lagos

Monday, 07 October 2019 07:47

Lekki Conservation Centre (LCC), an urban jungle in the heart of Lagos, is a centre of excellence in environmental research and education reserved as a sanctuary for the rich flora and fauna of the Lekki Peninsula. This 78-¬hectare facility is the only one of its kind in the Lagos area and it was established by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) in 1992. NCF is Nigeria’s foremost Non-Governmental Organization dedicated to nature conservation and biodiversity management.

 

Lekki Conservation Centre has grown into one of Africa’s most diverse urban nature parks. Located along the Lekki-Epe expressway and covering a land area stretching from Km19 towards Okun-Ibeju village, LCC is the only vibrant protected area and one of the few reputable tourists’ destinations in Lagos. 

 

LCC was established by NCF to focus on 4 thematic areas which include conservation, environmental education, research and ecotourism. LCC has evolved from core conservation into an emerging ecotourism destination making it to be tagged as Pearl of Ecotourism in Nigeria. 

 

Over the last 29 years, the centre has catered for over 2 million tourists, LCC has become a strong advocacy tool used in promoting forest regeneration, environmental literacy and campaigns. 

 

As a Resource Centre, LCC is a model for promotion of environmental education and public awareness/understanding of the natural world due to the rapidly increasing threats to the natural environment, the need to stem the alarming loss of the natural environment and the attendant potentially drastic consequences for the planet as well as the concerns for the future conduct, welfare, happiness and survival of mankind on earth.

 

LCC has a Rotunda, a hall that can sit 150 people for a meeting. The nature reserve is a savannah that reptiles, Mona monkeys and different species of birds, species of plants and insects are found. Because of its swampy nature, there is a wooden board walkway through which tourists and researchers make their way into the forest reserve. LCC has the longest Canopy Walkway in Africa. Inside the reserve is a Family Park designed for picnics and relaxation. The Park has 4 Gazebos; each named after a wild animal found in the area. It has other smaller huts for relaxation. It has diverse floor games, fish ponds and jungle gym facilities.

 

It is the only vibrant protected area in Lagos State and one of the very few vibrant tourist destinations of repute in Lagos and has thus been recognized as one of the notable Sites/Monuments of special interest and exceptional relevance by the Lagos State Government under the LISTED SITES for the preservation, protection and restoration of historical properties and cultural heritage in Lagos State and for connected purposes.

 

LCC is a tourist haven that welcomes people from all walks of life in their thousands daily. Corporate organisations visit the place for team bonding. Schools pupils and undergraduate visit the place for environmental education. 

 

Recently, an “Orchids Garden” in memory of the former Executive Director of NCF, Late Prof. Emmanuel Obot was re-launched. The garden feature species such as Angraecum pyriforme, Bulbophyllum filiforme, Bulbophyllum nigericum, Bulbophyllum porphyrostachys, Habenaria nigrescens, Liparis goodyeroides and Polystachya cooperi. The garden serves as collection centre, environmental education, nature conservation and eco-tourism. 

As the nation commemorates the World Tourism Day, NCF invites everyone to have a feel of what Lekki Conservation represents.

 

 

Lagos Went ‘A Mile' for Vultures

Wednesday, 02 October 2019 14:55

Nature enthusiasts, conservationists and concerned members of the public gathered for a cycling event organised by the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) to create awareness on vulture conservation in Nigeria. The event took place on Saturday, 21st September 2019 and tagged “A Mile for the Egyptian Vultures”.

 

More than 100 cyclists assembled at Lekki Conservation Centre from where they proceeded to Sandfill Bus Stop on Ozumba Mbadiwe Road, Victoria Island through the Lekki-Epe Expressway and back to LCC amidst an atmosphere of pomp whilst calling on people to stop killing of vultures, desist from use in belief-based practices and halt sales of their parts.

 

Researches have revealed that vultures will go into extinction if drastic efforts are not made to stop the threats against the species. Vultures are nature’s ‘sanitary officers’ that render clean-up services of the environment. As carrion feeders, vultures rid our environment of carcasses thereby preventing the spread of diseases.

 

The Director-General of NCF, Dr. Muhtari Aminu-Kano in his welcome address, thanked the participants and urged them to carry on the campaign till the goal is achieved.  

 

This event is a follow-up to the International Vulture Awareness Day (IVAD) commemoration activities that were carried out in 4 cities in Nigeria – Sokoto, Jalingo, Enugu and Ibadan earlier in the month under the NCF’s Egyptian Vulture New-Life Project. 

 

In attendance were NCF Council member, Dr Ade Alakija; Director Technical Programme, Dr. Joseph Onoja; Save the Vulture Ambassadors – a renowned actor, Yomi Fash-Lanso and musician, Tito da fire.

 

Lekki Concession Company, the managers of Lekki Toll and Lekki-Epe Expressway lent their support through effective management of traffic and provision of security. 

 

Dafinone Family Promotes Culture of Tree Planting

Wednesday, 02 October 2019 14:24

Chief Ede Dafinone, Chairman, National Executive Council of the Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) led his siblings on a tree planting exercise in Sapele on Monday, 30th September 2019 in memory of their father, late Chief (Senator) David Omueya Dafinone, OFR who passed on, on 30th September 2018.

 

According to Chief Ede Dafinone: “When a great man dies we typically say ‘an Iroko has fallen’.  So, it is appropriate that this day, an Iroko seedling will be planted in the garden of the crumb rubber exporting factory established by my father in Amukpe, Sapele, Delta State.” 

 

Chief Dafinone hopes to use the tree planting exercise to draw attention to Nigeria’s dwindling forest cover which now stands at about 4% while also drumming support for the conservation efforts of NCF. He said further that tree planting to commemorate births and deaths is common in some Asian countries and if this trend is established in Nigeria, it can become one of the anchors of NCF’s Green Recovery Nigeria (GRN) initiative.

 

Dafinone said: “To plant a tree is to send a signal to the rest of Nigeria that we need to preserve our land. This Iroko tree planted in my father’s memory will grow up to 500 years. While some people are cutting trees and destroying forests, we will continue to plant trees”

 

Hon. Emmanuel Agbaje, the Finance and Admin Manager of Sapele Integrated Industries Ltd (SIIL) in his introductory remark revealed that Senator Dafinone established the factory in 1995 for the processing of rubber because Sapele is known for large rubber plantation and the founder of SIIL remained one of the largest employers of labour of the time. Chief Ede Dafinone, appreciated the support of the staff of SIIL and community people of Sapele, Amukpe especially as they have immortalized the Senator a day before. 

 

Present at the event were Chief (Mrs.) Cynthia Dafinone, widow of the Senator; Chief Godfrey Dafinone, deceased brother; Mr. Duvie Dafinone, the deceased's son; Mrs. Eyamba Dafinone and Mrs. Stella Dafinone, daughters-in-law; management staff of SIIL, media, security agents among others.