The Honourable Minister of Environment, Mrs. Laurentia Mallam has called for assistance from World Bank and Environment Development Partners on healthy environment in Nigeria.
The Minister made this call recently in Abuja during an interactive meeting organized by World Bank and other environment partners.
Mrs. Mallam enjoined the environment development partners to pay greater attention on issues of climate change in 2015 since the government cannot tackle it alone.
The Minister solicited for intervention funds to enable the country tackle her environmental challenges. She commended the World Bank for provision of funds in tackling environmental challenges as well as sponsorship of the Ministry on exchange programme held in Brazil in December, 2014.
Consequently, She called on other environment development Partners to emulate the efforts of the World Bank in ensuring good environment. Mallam assured that the experiences gathered in Brazil would adequately utilized adding that plans were under way to invite the Brazilian engineers to the country to appraise the environmental situation of the country.
Earlier in her presentation, the Permanent Secretary, Mrs Nana Fatima Mede called for inter-departmental and agency collaboration to tackle the environmental challenges in the country.
She assured that the Ministry will motivate and stimulate the environment sector plan for the next 5years in order to ensure the achievement of the vision 20:20:20 of the present administration.
According to her, ”this environment sector plan was motivated by the threats on Nigerians caused by the environmental factors”.
Mrs. Mede noted that the strategic focus of the ministry would be on life degradation and natural resources conservation, pollution and environmental health, climate change and sustainable development as well as environmental governance.
The Permanent Secretary said that the country’s forest cover has fallen below 5% and would be collaborating with National Youth Service Corp to fully engage the youths under the scheme in tree planting through- out the mandatory one year scheme. The youths would be encouraged to plant three trees a year, nurture it through-out the one year to improve the country’s lost forest cover.
She stated that the directors in the ministry would visit the orientation camps of the NYSC through-out the federation to create the necessary awareness and educate them on the importance of tree planting during their one year mandatory scheme.
Mrs. Mede emphasized on the need to create awareness campaigns to educate Nigerians on the indiscriminate dumping of refuse, bush burning and dirty environment within every two months by the ministry on electronic and print media.
The Permanent Secretary, further stressed that clubs like the tree planting society and environment club would be created in unity schools through-out the federation in collaboration with the Ministry of Education to sensitize the students on how to cater for the environment and protect it through very proactive actions.
Speaking at the meeting, the Country Director of World Bank, Marie Francoise Marie-Nelly assured the Ministry on the readiness of her organization in the provision of the necessary funds and expertise advice in tackling the challenges posed by climate change.
She therefore, called on all other donor agencies to take a cue from World Bank in tackling issues bordering on Environment.
In attendance were the directors from the Ministry and other environmental development partners.
CIO (Press and Public Relations)
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Report By: PRNigeria.com