Legislator’s organisation seeks passage of Climate Change Bill

Edwin Akwueh, Abuja

The Nigerian Chapter of the Global Legislator’s Organisation for a Balanced Environment (GLOBE Nigeria) has called on the National Assembly to pass the draft Climate Change framework bill 2017 that is currently at different stages of both chambers.

President of the organisation, Senator Bukar Abba Ibrahim made the call on Wednesday at a world press conference held at the National Assembly complex in Abuja.

This is coming on the same day the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Patricia Espinosa announced receipt of Nigeria’s Climate Change Ratification Instrument.

Senator Bukar Abba Ibrahim who spoke to newsmen as part of GLOBE Nigeria’s media chat stated that it was time for the Legislature to put a seal on the Paris Climate Change agreement that President Muhammadu Buhari signed on behalf of Nigeria.

It may be recalled that the President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki a few weeks ago, implored GLOBE Nigeria during a courtesy visit, to ensure that the organisation works towards passing Nigeria’s first climate change law.

Senator Bukar Abba and his counterpart in the House of Representatives had recently linked the meningitis-caused death of over 500 people in Nigeria to the effects of climate change induced heat wave that creates the breeding ground for causal organisms of deadly diseases including the Ebola virus that has re-surfaced in West Africa.

They also enumerated the benefits of increased climate action in developing countries like Nigeria to include meeting the Sustainable Development Goals 7 (affordable and clean energy,) 13 (Climate action,) and 17 (Partnerships for the goals.)

The President of the organisation further lamented the shift in policy direction of President Trump-led administration of the United States on climate change and called on the United States Government to rescind its decision on slowing down action on climate change.

According to the Coordinator of GLOBE Nigeria and Special Assistant to the President of the Senate, Innocent Onah, there is no better time than now for African Legislators to come together and pass laws that can protect their people from the impacts of climate change.

Mr. Onah stated that a 2017 analysis by the London School of Economics and Political Science reported that there is a rise in the number of countries that have introduced legislation to support their nationally determined contributions (NDCs) to the Paris Climate Change Agreement.

He further stated that the Nigeria Climate Change Framework bill, if passed, will add to the over 1,200 climate-related laws that have been enacted globally since 1997 by 164 countries including 93 of the top 100 emitters – up from 99 countries in 2015. “The numbers are good. Climate change is not only a social issue, but a business issue as well. There is no strong reason why we should be lagging behind,” he said.

Mr. Sam Onuigbo who is the Vice President of GLOBE Nigeria, further reiterated the political will of the Executive and Legislature, noting that when the Climate Change Framework bill is passed, it will be assented to by Mr. President and implemented immediately. He therefore urged his colleagues and all well-meaning Nigerians to support the bill as it will be coming up for second and third reading soon.

He also announced plans by the organisation to sponsor a clean energy legislation that could support Nigeria’s revenue generation by reducing dependence on oil & gas in a stepwise and strategic manner.

GLOBE Nigeria

The Global Legislators Organization (GLOBE) is an international organisation comprising national parliamentarians from over 80 countries committed to developing and overseeing the implementation of laws in pursuit of sustainable development.

GLOBE is a non-party political organisation that supports legislators through national chapters to develop and advance laws on climate change, natural capital accounting and forests. With headquarters in London, offices in Beijing, Bogota, Brussels, Kinshasa, Manila, Mexico City, New Delhi, Tokyo and through chapters established in over 60 legislatures, GLOBE is developing a unique international network of legislators committed to practical action.

GLOBE Nigeria was formed on 12th February, 2013, under the pioneer Leadership of His Excellency, Senator Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki (CON). Nigeria is the third African country, and first West African country to join GLOBE. Therefore, GLOBE Nigeria is standing side-by-side with legislators of other countries in recognizing and contributing to the central roles of legislators worldwide. The current leadership of GLOBE Nigeria are H.E Senator (Dr.) Bukar Abba Ibrahim (CON) and Rep. Sam Onuigbo as President and Vice President respectively.

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