The 9th edition of the World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD), has been celebrated on April 10th, 2014. It was an opportunity for participants to draw the Senegalese authorities' attention to the vital importance as regards the preservation of Dakar's Technopole wetland. The site is a biodiversity heaven that records about 172 species and serves a receptacle for the water runoff from Dakar. Should the Techonpole site disappeared, the Marist VIP district would be engulfed by water.
The question of continuing to preserve the Technopole in Dakar came back on May 10th, during the celebration marking the World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD). Participants visited the site followed by a press conference. They unanimously asked the State of Senegal to protect Technopole, one of the few green lungs of Dakar. The site is a biodiversity heaven in an urban setting. It receives about 172 species of birds. Furthermore, the Director of National Parks of Senegal says it acts as a sponge for purifying the air in Dakar. Colonel Soulèye Ndiaye warns'' If we ever allow Technopole to disappear, houses in Marist (a district of Dakar) will be invaded by floods and become the runoff area’’.
The message appears to be understood by the Permanent Secretary of the Minister of the Environment and Sustainable Development. According to Mame Maissa Tine, areas such as Technopole in Dakar are a blessing for the capital city. '' We need to preserve it. Activities can be developed on this site for Dakar where the lack of space is worsening with the pushes of concrete everywhere'' he said. He then thanked all partners such as Wetlands International and Nature-Communities and Development (NCD), which helped to organize WMBD since 2006.
Gabin Agblolon in charge of the Project'' Arctic to Africa'' (A2A) recalled that Wetlands International is working on finding answers to challenges and raise awareness among communities as well as it shall hold sessions to enhance capacity building on biodiversity. '' We will always fight for the preservation of wetlands such as Technopole'' he said.
Dr. Adrien Coly, President of NCD is categorical.'' There are thousands of tourists who follow the birds every year, if the site is not well preserved, birds and tourists will be nowhere to be seen'' he says, while explaining the choice of this year's theme for the 9th edition of the World migratory Bird Day'
Last year, Wetlands International and civil society organizations where at the forefront to say "no" to the construction project of a National wrestling Arena on the Technopole wetland site in Dakar. The project has been since kept on stand by the State of Senegal.
Pape Diomaye THIARE
Communications and Media Coordinator
Wetlands International Africa
Phone: +221 33 869 16 81