By Mashe Umaru Gwamna
The Minister of State for Environment, Ibrahim Jibril has called on Nigerians to work with the National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA) in promoting environmental governance, the rule of law in her quest for Green Economy in Nigeria.
The Minister stated this on recently, while presenting his Keynote address during the 11th National Stakeholders’ Forum with the theme “Environmental Governance – a key to achieving Green Economy”.
Jibril who was represented by Pastor Friday Afiakurue, from the Ministry of Environment, alerted Nigerians that the environment was approaching a tipping point. “The negative impacts of both natural and anthropogenic activities on the environment are beginning to tell on us”.
A statement signed by the Deputy Director (Information) for Director General, Sule Oyofo said the Minister stated that in order to protect our environment effectively, it was necessary from time to time to come up with laws, regulations and standards to guide and control our human activities in various sectors of the economy with full involvement and participation of all Stakeholders, including the citizenry. “This is essence for good environmental governance”.
According to him, the main objective of the Forum was to deepen Nigerians knowledge and understanding of environmental governance, as a critical factor in achieving green economy within the context of sustainable development.
The statement further hinted that, this objective, along with others such as understanding the concepts and elements of environmental governance and green economy, and their linkages within the context of sustainable development will be mainstreamed into the National Development Plan in future.
He explained that Environmental Governance is characterized by the integration of sectoral policies, institutional capacities, priorities, and clear operational objectives. “It encourages new and additional public-private partnerships and the use of market –based instruments to address environmental challenges”, he stated.
He informed the audience that the Government is taking an increasingly pro-active measures in planning for environmental protection and sustainable development that will put Nigeria on the pathway to resilient and inclusive green growth insisting that “we shall continue to encourage environment-friendly investments and eco-friendly industrial activities and operation.
The Forum which was chaired by Professor A.M. Imevbore, former Director, Institute of Ecology, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife also had in attendance Professor M.T. Ladan of the Department of Public Law, Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria who delivered the lead Paper titled “Environmental Governance – A Key to Achieving Green Economy”; Senator Foster Ogola, who represented the Chairman, Senate Committee on Environment; Mr. Tony Azubuike, who represented Chairman, Senate Committee on Climate Change and pioneer Director-General of the Agency, Dr (Mrs.) Ngeri S. Benebo.