The senior special assistant to the president on Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, has canvassed media support in order to attain the 2030 Agenda in Nigeria, especially with the onset of the Decade Global Goals.
Mrs Orelope-Adefulire stated this at a strategic retreat for journalists in Abuja on Thursday.
She noted that media support was crucial to the achievement of the SDGs in Nigeria because of the training and exposure of journalists.
She explained that the 17 SDGs were a universal agenda aimed at ending poverty, safeguarding the planet and ensuring that all people enjoyed peace and prosperity by the year 2030.
The presidential aide added that SDG-16, which aims to promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provides access to justice for all and builds effective, accountable, and inclusive institutions at all levels, clearly captures the strategic roles of media practitioners.
She also said Target-10 provides that nations of the world have access to information and protect fundamental freedoms in line with national and international agreements.
Mrs Orelope-Adefulire, who is a former deputy governor of Lagos State, asked journalists to regard themselves as part of a larger team determined to help the progress and development of humanity.
She recounted that the country had made huge progress since 2015 when President Muhammadu Buhari and other world leaders met at the 70th session of the United Nations to adopt the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
According to her, the federal, 36 state governments and the FCT, had since created institutional mechanisms for the implementation of 2030 Agenda, which would ensure economic sustainability, social inclusiveness and a strong environment.
The presidential aide disclosed that the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the President on the SDGs (OSSAP-SDGs) was created in January 2016 to provide horizontal and vertical inter-governmental coordination; multi-stakeholders’ partnership and resource mobilization; as well as robust advocacy and communications for the SDGs in Nigeria.
She said in the past five years the OSSAP-SDGs, through its Conditional Grant Programme, (CSGs), had supported governments at the sub-national levels and other stakeholders on projects and initiatives aimed at achieving the 17 goals of the SDGs.
Mrs Orelope-Adefulire said working with the subnational governments, other stakeholders as well as its local and foreign partners, OSSAP-SDGs had established framework, processes and strategic initiatives designed to aid the success of the 2030 Agenda in Nigeria.
She listed them as the development of a country transition strategy – from MDGs to SDGs – 2016; SDGs data mapping and the publication of Nigeria SDGs-indicators baseline report – 2017; integration of the economic, social and environmental dimensions of the SDGs into the Nigeria’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan; domestication and customisation of the Nigeria Integrated Sustainable Development Goals (iSDGs) Policy Simulation Model -2019 as well as ongoing re-alignment of the National Statistic System with the requirements and Indicators of the SDGs.
The presidential aide also said her office had commenced the design and implementation of the Integrated National Financing Frameworks for the SDGs and presented Nigeria’s 2nd Voluntary National Review to the UN High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development in July 2020.
Mrs Orelope-Adefulire said if Nigerians work together, the challenges in successfully implementing SDGs in the country could be surmountable.
“The challenges we face in our efforts to achieve the SDGs are numerous, complex and multi-faceted. Nevertheless, with all stakeholders working together and in synergy – as exemplified in what we are doing here, we will certainly overcome,” she said.
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