Open Access Original Research Article

The Botany of Mungo Park’s Travels in Africa, 1795-1806

R. Trevor Wilson

Asian Journal of Geographical Research, Page 1-19
DOI: 10.9734/ajgr/2019/v2i130075

Mungo Park journeyed through West Africa during 1795-1797 and 1805-1806.  The first journey was ostensibly purely geographical whereas the second journey was geographical plus the examination of British trade possibilities with the interior.  His main brief was to discover the source and outlet of the River Niger.  On both journeys he departed from the current Gambia, through Senegal and Mali the first time, and on to Niger and Nigeria the second.  He was the first European to see the Niger, at Segou (Mali), and noted its eastward flow (prior speculation considered it flowed westwards).  Botany was not in his brief but on both journeys he noted the vegetation and its use.  He brought new facts to Britain’s intellectual establishment including describing the preparation of indigo dye and its use in spinning and weaving.  His ‘discovery’ of the shea butter tree – given the specific epithet Butyrospermum parkii – is his outstanding contribution to botany.  He also contributed to science the locust bean Parkia biglobosa and another indigenous multipurpose tree Pterocarpus erinaceus.  Many of Park’s plants are important in regional agroforestry systems and continue to provide food and non wood forest products to the benefit of people and livestock.

Open Access Original Research Article

Knowledge on the Environmental Disaster Occurrence in the Democratic Republic of the Congo: The Case of Flooding and Bushfire in Businga Territory, Nord Ubangi

Koto-te-Nyiwa Ngbolua, André Nzamonga Gamo, Amédée Kundana Gbatea, Trésor Mbombo Limbaya, Adèle Chimanuka Mwinja, Gédéon Bongo Ngiala, Colette Masengo Ashande, Ruphin Djoza Djolu

Asian Journal of Geographical Research, Page 1-15
DOI: 10.9734/ajgr/2019/v2i130077

Aims: The aim of this research was to assess the knowledge, perceptions and attitudes of victims and stakeholders on environmental disasters occurring in Businga territory.

Study Design: This research employed a descriptive study design whereby the characteristics of respondents were described.

Place and Duration of Study: The study was carried out in Bodangabo, Businga and Karawa sectors of Businga territory in Nord-Ubangi, Democratic Republic of the Congo between January 2016 and December 2017.

Methodology: A survey was conducted on 150 respondents among the victims and stakeholders in the prevention and management of environmental disasters in three sectors of Businga territory to whom the semi-structured questionnaire was administered.

Results: The findings show that 54% of environmental disasters originate from bushfire and 46% from floods. The bushfire is more evident in the area of Bodangabo and Karawa, while the flood is noticed in the area of Businga precisely in the city, because the ¾ is largely crossed by streams (Likpolo, Lokame, Legbala, Mongala). Thus, 80% of disaster victims are not satisfied with the support. However, 96% of respondents denied the provincial government's contribution, 92% confirmed the total absence of the environmental disaster prevention policy, and 88% confirmed the inefficiency of disaster prevention mode in Businga territory. With regard to the period of onset of disasters, it is clear from this survey that the floods are sporadic and occurring every two or three years compared to the bushfire which is manifested every year. 68% of the difficulties are due to lack of awareness due to insufficient financial resources and 32% to the shortage of qualified personnel for the prevention and management of these disasters.

Conclusion: The lack of a policy of prevention and management of environmental disasters both at the provincial and local levels is at the base of this high frequency. Therefore, it is relevant that a provincial body responsible for alerting and advocating to the stakeholders involved in the prevention and management of environmental disasters, to settle in all Businga sectors. Furthermore, it is necessary to install the early warning system as tool of disaster prevention.

Open Access Original Research Article

This study was designed to mirror the deep issues behind the crisis in the Niger Delta region, using the oil exploration of Ogoniland as the case study and proffering possible solutions on how best to combat the identified problems. To achieve this aim, focus group discussions, unstructured interviews and oral testimonies were employed for the collection of data; and data analysis were carried out using simple coding for recognition, transcription from the local dialect to English Language, rewriting and interpretations. The results revealed that the people’s expectation from the Government and Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria (SPDC) has not been met; illegal refineries and other criminal vices are now fully in operation in Ogoniland. The people blamed the Shell Petroleum Development Company, the Federal Government, some of their corrupt chiefs, Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People (MOSOP) and some of the community youths for the problems in the communities. However, the Ogoni people believed that the full implementation of the United Nations Environmental Programmes (UNEP) report on Ogoniland and the Ogoni Bill of Rights will ameliorate all their sufferings. It was recommended that SPDC should avoid reaching agreements with the traditional rulers and politicians from Ogoni on projects bordering on development of the land that excludes the people. It was also recommended that SPDC should carry out town hall meetings, focus group discussions or even distribute questionnaires in the local communities in Ogoni communities to ascertain the best solutions from the local people (who are the majority) rather than taking only the decisions from Ogoni leaders, which may not be the consensus opinion of the people.

Open Access Review Article

Analysis of Hydrologic Response Units and Impact of Flooding in Kuala Terengganu Sub-basins River Catchment in Malaysia

Ibrahim Sufiyan, J. I. Magaji, A. T. Oga, I. Zaharaddeen

Asian Journal of Geographical Research, Page 1-16
DOI: 10.9734/ajgr/2019/v2i129631

One of the issue of environmental disasters occurring in a wet tropical environment is flood influenced by the climatic factor of rainfall with high intensity. Flood is the most frequent catastrophe in Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia. The flood occurs during the monsoon season inundating riverbank and displacing the inhabitant rendering them homeless. The application of the Soil Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) is employed to identify the Hydrologic Response Units (HRUs). The flood vulnerability simulation in the Terengganu sub-basins river catchment was done using the most affected sub-basins. In this study, the impacts of five out of the 25 sub-basins have been affected by high flooding risk. The sub-basin with the highest impact of Hydrologic Response Unit is the sub-basin Three and the lowest is found in sub-basin Five.

Open Access Review Article

Distribution and Economic Potential of Manganese Deposits in Nigeria: A Review

Ojo Adeoye Akintola

Asian Journal of Geographical Research, Page 1-8
DOI: 10.9734/ajgr/2019/v2i130076

The Northern basement complex of Nigeria contains a large number of manganese deposits. So far, ten deposits of manganese have been reported by previous workers. These deposits occur within Precambrian metasediments (schist belt), mafic and ultramafic rocks which are Proterozoic in age and folded into synclinorial belts within the crystalline basement complex. Considering their widespread distribution in space, time and tectonic setting, some are considered to be of ensilalic mode of evolution while others are ensimatic. However, the mineralizations are mostly of poor grade, and thus require beneficiation processing. The local steel industries within the country have continued to depend on manganese ore. No satisfactory substitute for manganese in steel production has been identified as at present. The applications of manganese deposits by geologists, chemical and environmental engineers, ceramicists, soil scientists and microbiologists shows a bright future for manganese ore in Nigeria. The ever increasing demand for steel products has continued to put pressure on Federal Government of Nigeria to complete the construction work at the nation’s steel producing plant which, will result in the need for a manganese concentrates for economic growth and development.