April 23, 2019 / 7:39 PM / 2 months ago

U.N. to help raise $50 billion for Lake Chad revival project

FILE PHOTO: Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari addresses the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York, U.S., September 25, 2018. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri/File Photo

ABUJA (Reuters) - U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has agreed to help raise $50 billion for a project to help revive drought-stricken Lake Chad, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari said on Tuesday.

The lake, which borders Nigeria, Niger, Chad and Cameroon, has lost 90 per cent of its surface area due to poor water management and climate change, and the United Nations has warned that millions of people need help to avert famine.

The area is also a stronghold for militant groups including Islamic State in West Africa (ISWA) and Nigeria’s Boko Haram.

“President Muhammadu Buhari has welcomed the acceptance of the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres to co-chair a Special Session to raise $50 billion to fund the inter-basin water transfer from Central Africa to revive the Lake Chad,” Buhari said in a statement.

Reporting By Felix Onuah in Abuja; Writing by Libby George; Editing by Frances Kerry

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