Meeting of West Africa Botanic Gardens Network (WABGNET), Abuja, Nigeria
A meeting of the West African Botanic Gardens Network (WABGNET) took place at the Abuja Palmetum, Nigeria 13-14th November 2008, with representatives from Nigeria, Ghana, Burkina Faso and The Ivory Coast. The Guest of Honour was Mr Remi Bablola, Minister of State for Finance and Supervising Minister of the Federal Capital Territory.
The theme of the Symposium was "Botanic Gardens: Securing Nigeria's Flora and Fauna to Address Poverty Improve Human Well-Being and Tackle The Challenges of Climate Change". Professor Emmanuel Obot, Executive Director of the Nigerian Conservation Foundation spoke on 'Harnessing untapped plant resources for poverty reduction' and Dr. Ndana, Head of Biological Sciences at the University of Abuja, delivered a paper on 'Securing Nigeria's flora and fauna to address poverty, improve human well-being and tackle the challenges of climate change'. Dr George Owusu-Afriyie spoke about BGCI and chaired a discussion on the African Botanic Gardens Network and the BGCI Education Congress, due to take place in Durban, South Africa in November 2009. Discussions also took place on Target 4 of the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation (GSPC), the International Agenda and the Education Congress in 2009 and the African Botanic Network Bulletin.
Participants had an opportunity to tour the developing Abuja Palmatum and Nursery, which contains over 5,000 species of palm.
The meeting was kindly hosted and sponsored by the Nigerian Chapter of WABGNET enabling delegates from Lagos, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Togo to attend. Sponsorship was also generously provided by Mrs Murtala Mohammed of MMM Botanic Gardens Lagos and the Abuja Palmatum and Mr Tolsin and Mr Sola of Shodex Gardens.