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Experts seek increased budgetary allocation for climate change

Participants at the workshop on climate change

An International Non-Governmental Organisation, Climate Parliament Network, has advocated increased budgetary provision to tackle the challenges of Climate Change in Nigeria.

The Chairman, Climate Parliament Nigeria Network, Samuel Onuigbo, made the request in Abuja at the Climate Parliament One-day Technical Capacity-building Workshop for Federal and state Legislatures.

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Mr Onuigbo said the workshop focused on “Fostering Low Carbon and Climate Resilient Nigeria”, and aimed to galvanise the interest of lawmakers in providing the requisite support system for a decarbonised, low-carbon, and climate-resilient country.

He said the workshop would help the Legislature’s in their critical role of driving political will, awareness creation and exposing them to the varied aspects of the climate agenda.

“This workshop is intended to create awareness on what is required in tackling the devastating effects of climate change through an approach like renewable energy,” Mr Onuigbo told his audience.

He also emphasised the need for lawmakers to formulate laws that would promote renewable energy, its efficiency, while they considered legislations on Climate Change.

“For us, one of the greatest ways of tackling Climate Change, during budgeting appropriation we ensure that money is set aside for addressing the challenges of climate change, and of course, that is why in enacting this law, we make sure that we make provision to have someone in the directorate cadre, in all the Ministry, Department and Agencies, MDA’s to oversee issues of climate,” He added.

The Chairman, House Committee on Electoral Matters and Political Parties Affairs, Aishatu Dukku described Climate Change as a very fundamental issue that affects Nigeria, and assured the people that the National Assembly would always make proper legislations to protect the environment.

“This workshop is very beneficial because Climate Change is a very fundamental issue that affects us in Nigeria as a whole,” Mrs Dokku declared.

“As you have seen this year, the weather and the climate have been very harsh, with a lot of flooding and this is because of Climate Change, and it is because we’ve cut down all the trees, there are so many evolutions, and nothing is being done about it. So as a legislator, I’m much concerned, this training of course, will help in making things better for us.”

Renewable energy projects

On his part, the Minister of Power, Aliyu Abubakar said the Ministry focused on mitigating Climate Change through the implementation of renewable energy projects.

According  to him. “This workshop is seriously needed to build the capacity of the legislators both the state and National level, to understand the Climate Change and also make laws that will bring about the implementation of both mitigation and adaptation of Climate Change. We have policies that regulate renewable energy sector but we need to also have legislatures that will foster the development of that renewable energy market, legislature that will mobilise private sector funding in the implementation of the renewable energy project in Nigeria.”

The Secretary General, Climate Parliament, Nick Dunlop, commended the effort of the Nigerian government so far on its climate policies, but stressed the critical need for the government to step up the pace and scale of action on climate Change.

The workshop is an initiative of the Climate Parliament Network in collaboration with United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), under the Parliamentary Action on Renewable Energy (PARE) programme.

Reporting by Godson Elekwachi; Editing by Daniel Adejo and Tony Okerafor