Nigeria needs to be more decisive in ending gas flaring.
A coalition of Civil Society Organisations, CSOs, in Africa under the aegis of the State of the Union, SOTU, on Monday asked the Federal Government to ensure that it took more decisive steps towards a final date to end gas flaring in the country.
The group also called for the application of the African Mining Vision, AVM, to domestic mining activities as well as improved budgetary allocations to key sectors of the economy – particularly education, health and good governance issues as desirable imperatives for alleviating poverty and promoting good governance in the country.
These were some of the major recommendations included in the State of the Union Report on a two-year study conducted by the Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre, CISLAC, on Nigeria 2013 launched in Abuja.
The Report dwelled on the key sectors of Nigerian economy, with six categories of key recommendations on the affected sectors.
The report said Nigeria needs to be more decisive in legislating, monitoring and committing oil multinationals to a final date to end gas flaring. The country also needs to promptly apply the AVM to domesticate mining activities with adequate training of regulatory officials and regulation of activities of small scale and artisan miners in the country.
The report also recommended that the country needs to popularise the African Convention on Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources in order to mitigate poverty and protect the people from the negative effects of reckless exploration of the natural resources in the country.
The experts, who finalised the Report, also called for a review and enforcement of national laws for forest management and preservation of wildlife to reverse the speed of deforestation and sensitisation, They also asked for awareness about the Freedom of Information, FOI, Act at all levels of governance, particularly the civil service, with a view to ensuring a knowledgeable workforce required to drive developmental agenda of governments.
The President, Pan African Parliament, PAP, Bethel Amadi, said at the formal launching of the State of Compliance of the African Union Conventions, Instruments and Framework in Nigeria, that despite the Nigerian and other African governments’ leaders ratification of the AU Conventions on Health, Agriculture, Corruption and Democracy, Human Rights, Rights and Welfare of the Child, amongst others, little efforts were being made to implement the provisions of the legal instruments.
Mr. Amadi, who noted that the processes that led to the adoption of most of the legal instruments were not inclusive enough, said that Nigeria should champion the domestication and implementation of the legal instruments.
This, he said, had the potential to help integrate Africa’s shared resources in order to ensure that the overall goals of achieving socio-economic empowerment of the citizens and ensuring good governance in the continent.
The parliamentarian blamed the political crises in many African countries on the failure of the leaders to promote citizens’ engagement in politics and expanding the political space, adding that adoption of AU Conventions, such as that on corruption, would ensure prudent management of the resources and efficient resource allocations to areas that would bear positively on the citizenry.
The Executive Director of CISLAC, Ibrahim Musa, said that the SOTU study showed that many African governments were yet to muster the needed political will for domesticating most of the AU Conventions and Protocols that have the potential of curbing corruption and alleviating economic burden of their peoples.
Mr. Musa asked the Nigerian and other governments in Africa to show greater commitment to domestication and implementation of the Conventions, particularly those that affect Democracy, Gender, Human Rights, Agriculture Health, Youth and most importantly, the Rights and Welfare of the Child.