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Stakeholders advocate increased budget to fight impacts of climate change

Stakeholders in the environment sector have called for increased budget allocation to fight the impacts of climate change in the country.

Participants at the forum to review Nigeria’s 2024 Climate Budget and the Energy Transition Plan to mitigate climate change

The stakeholders converged on Abuja on Thursday, April 18. to review Nigeria’s 2024 Climate Budget and the Energy Transition Plan to mitigate climate change in the country.

Speaking at the forum, Sen. Abubaka Bagudu, Minister of Budget and National Planning, said that the Government of Nigeria was committed to climate issues that would align with the sustainable goals for climate mitigation for 2030.

Bagudu, who was represented by Dr Sanjo Faniran, Director, Social Department, assured that the ministry would soon hold a round table to ensure commitment to environmental issues.

Dr Michael David, Executive Director, Global Initiative for Food Security and Ecosystem Preservation (GIFSEP), said that Nigeria’s budget had to be climate friendly to build resilience.

He expressed displeasure on the allocated sum for climate change, saying that only 5.02 per cent of the total of 2024 budget was allocated to fight the impacts of climate change.

Prof. Shuaib Hassan, Director, Centre for Environmental Studies, University of Abuja, said that, for Nigeria to fight climate change, it must stay away from fossil fuels.

He urged the Federal Government to look into the budget allocation for climate change, waste management and research.

Shuaib added that for the country to achieve net-zero emissions by 2060, it would have to move from conventional fossil fuels to alternative renewable energy sources like wind and solar to reach the goal.

Sen. Abubakar Kyari, the Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, said that climate change had impacted on the food security of the nation.

Kyari, who was represented by Mr Odey Patrick, an Assistant Director in the Ministry, urged stakeholders to show more concern to the issues of adaptation and mitigation.

Dr Salisu Dahiru, the Director-General, the National Council on Climate Change (NCCC), said that advocacy, collaboration and partnership were key to combating climate change.

Dahiru, who was represented by Mrs Adesola Effiwatt from the Climate Investment Desk, NCCC, said that climate change had gone beyond an environmental, as it is now an economic and social issue.

Mrs Ibironke Olubamise, National Coordinator, Global Environment Facility Small Grants Programme (GEF-SGP), urged that whatever decision arrived at to be implemented to build climate resilience.

“GEF is the largest funder of environmental projects in the world, we have seven national parks and communities around them are surrounded with natural resources that we are trying to manage,’’ she said.

Mr Kenneth Akpan, representative of the Country Director, OXFAM, expressed optimism that the budget on climate change could carry all stakeholders along.

By Abigael Joshua

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