In a bid to improve the coverage of conservation and the environment in Nigeria, Wild Africa Fund has partnered with the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA), the largest TV network in Nigeria, to increase public awareness of conservation in Nigeria.
The partnership will involve the production of TV series that will air as a 10-minute segment on Environment Matters, a 30-minute environmental TV program created to provide environmental news to its wide audience.
The series will air three times weekly first on all its network channels every Tuesday at 12:30 PM (WAT). It will also air on NTA News 24 on Thursdays at 1 pm (WAT) and on its international network every Sunday at 12:30 pm (WAT). NTA network airs on DSTV 251 AND 419. While News 24 broadcasts on 419, its international network airs on 251. NTA News airs on Channel 46 on GOTV.
Nigeria is faced with several environmental and conservation challenges from air pollution, poaching, loss of habitat, and illegal wildlife trade. Nigeria has emerged as the number one transit hub in the world for the trafficking of pangolin scales and illegal ivory as well as a major market for illegal bushmeat. Nigeria’s wildlife population has massively declined and species like lions, elephants, gorillas, chimpanzees, drill monkeys, and crocodiles have been driven to the verge of extinction.
The Nigerian media are supposed to influence change through constant coverage of those issues to raise awareness of the challenges, but they have not done enough in covering conservation issues. This is what the partnership with NTA wants to address. The partnership aims to change people’s attitudes towards protecting and conserving the environment and wildlife while calling on the federal and state governments to update their laws to combat wildlife crime
The first season of the partnership will produce 13 TV series that will explore various conservation and environmental issues from the increase in bushmeat consumption in Nigeria and its effects, the illegal trade in wildlife products such as pangolins and ivories, deforestation, loss of habitat, Nigeria’s declining lion population and the need to update the country’s wildlife laws and strengthen enforcement.
NTA operates in Nigeria’s 36 states and the federal capital territory Abuja. NTA is a government-owned and partly commercial broadcaster that also broadcasts via satellite television such as DSTV, GOTV, and Startimes from its operational headquarters in Abuja. NTA has the potential to reach a pan-African audience. NTA broadcasts in English and other Nigeria indigenous languages such as Igbo, Yoruba, and Hausa.