West African countries have decried the poor access of member countries to the Green Climate Fund.
In a bid to fashion ways of accessing the fund, a three day regional workshop was organized for ECOWAS member states in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, to acquaint them with modalities of accessing the fund in the fight against the devastation caused by climate change in the region.
The Green Climate Fund was established in 2010 by the sixteenth session of the Conference of the Parties, of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change.
The nine billion dollars fund generated by 194 countries is aimed at reducing green house gas emissions in developing countries and help vulnerable societies to adapt to unavoidable impacts of climate change.
In a message, the Nigerian Minister of Environment, Mrs. Amina Mohammed said that West African countries must work towards accessing the funds as countries are increasingly looking for funds to tackle climate change.
The Minister expressed worry over West African countries not benefitting from the fund as desired.
“Access to the fund still remained minimal in the West African sub-region.
“The challenge could be attributed probably due to the convoluted access modalities that has led to apathy on the part of would be entities, low institutional capacity to scale accreditation hurdles,” the Minister noted.
The workshop, according to the minister, will enhance further understanding of the modalities for accessing the Green Climate Fund.
The Regional Advisor for Africa on Green Climate Fund, Mr. Alpha Kaloga said it is a special fund and first of its kind that ECOWAS countries must have direct access to.
“Instead of going through UNDP, World Bank or other International Institutions, developing countries have the opportunity to offer for the first time their own institutions to be accredited, get the money and implement,” he said.
In Africa only Mali, Senegal and Gambia have so far benefited from the Green Climate Fund.