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Pre-COP28: CSDevNet, NCCC, other Stakeholders discourse on Nigerian Climate Thematic Negotiation Issues

Photo of dignitories at the event
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A view of the dignitories at the event

Reported by Idris Mariam

The Climate and Sustainable Development Network (CSDevNet) participated in a one-day stakeholders’ Pre-COP28 Workshop organised by the National Council on Climate Change (NCCC) with the support of OXFAM Nigeria, as the last activity in our national preparations towards the 28th Session (COP 28) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) holding in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) from 30th November to 12th December 2023.

The workshop took place on November 23, 2023 in Asokoro Abuja, Nigeria.

It was aimed at enhancing national preparations though a platform to brief and update national stakeholders on the climate thematic negotiation issues, for effective participation in the global discourse with a common National position.

Participants at the workshop include representatives from the National Assembly, relevant MDAs, CSO, NGOs, Youth Groups, and the Media. A total number of one hundred and thirty-three (133) participants were at the event physically and eighteen (18) participated via the virtual platform.

A media session was held at the Workshop with over eighteen (18) media houses cut across TV, Radio, Print and Online.

Dr. Salisu Dahiru, Director General of NCCC, gave his welcome remarks expressing his delight to the participants.

“The attendance and presence of the national assembly in the event is for the conference of parties meeting holding in UAE from 30-12 December 2023. This represent the last couple of event that the council have been involved with climate change Acts,” he said.

He further stated that, the Act mandates the council to develop a carbon taxing system in collaboration with the federal inland revenue service. The task requires funding and the needed institutional strength and capacity. “Climate change destiny is our hands”.

Member House of Representative for Kwande/Ushongo Federal Constituency and Deputy Chairman for the House Committee on Environment, Honorable Terseer Ugbor, in his remarks noted that, The Nigeria government have come up with a policy to fund all council including the NCCC.

“We propose that the council should return to the commission. The country delegate must provide inclusive sector the outcome of COP28 are not mere outcomes,” he said.

Hon. Terseer emphasised on the objectives for Nigeria from National Assembly: foster green transition, building energy efficiency standard, the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) 2026 updated in 2022 commit to addressing the issue of climate change.

CSDevNet’s representatives at the event

He highlighted some challenges which include; Capacity building of technical stakeholders in climate change adaptation, Target settings and robust, improve communication strategies, Subnational government and marginalized group how to promote indigenous people, women, aligning our objective with the 20% reduction in green-house gases.

Kenneth Akpan, Oxfam country lead of the African Activists for Climate Justice (AACJ) project, emphasised that this gathering was to deliberate on the issues of climate change and Nigeria’s position on climate change.

Dr. Yerima P. Tarfa, the designated National Authority Expanciated on UNFCCC objective and the principle of the convention, identified the multilateral process during the COP, the institutional arrangements for the convention, the Kyoto protocol and the Paris Agreement.

In his presentation he stated the observers state, Groupings includes; G77+china- developing countries group comprising 130 members, Africa Group of Negotiators (AGN), The alliance of Small Island State (AOSIS) – 43, Least Developed Countries – 48 members, European Union – the European Union – 15 members, The Umbrella Group and the Environmental Integrity Group.

Mr. Chuks Okebugwu from NCCC, took the participants through Nigeria’s Key priorities of high importance to Nigeria and the region which includes; Mitigation, Global stock take, Article 6, Climate financing, Loss and damage, Transparency.

Also, priority needs for capacity building of negotiators, unpack chapter 9 of IPCC 6th assessment report for African Negotiator.

Dr. Priscilla Achakpa noted that some negotiators going to COP did not know what to do. “It is important to begin educating the negotiators in Nigeria in such a way that Nigeria’s position be clearly presented, she said.”

Dr. Florence Nicolas, deputy director Ministry of Mineral Mines and Steel Development, indicated that the mining ministry is left out during COP delegation and asked “how the environmental impact of mining could be addressed”.

Lauretta Boniface, Co-founder of Ecocykle Ltd., underscored the importance of young people using terminologies that they are fully aware of the concepts. “Young people drive policies and as such their increased number in COP negotiations is paramount”.

Dr. Tarfa Yerima DNA stated the questions from the event were regularity of interface.

“The COP is for showing successes of what countries have achieved and interface to build partnership and collaboration for networking,” he said.

It was also recommended that NCCC should restructure and/or strengthen collaboration with the Inter-ministerial Committee to develop a national stance and position.

The council noted that the communique for the event will be made available on their website.

To conclude, Mr. Kenneth Akpan appreciated participants in attendance highlighting the discussions and deliberations as fruitful.

He encouraged collaboration among stakeholders summarizing some key points raised during the workshop.

Mr Kenneth also emphasised on youth involvement and practice position in the process and commended the honorable Ugbor for attending and staying to the end.

The participants expressed their satisfaction at the outcome of the workshop.

It was recommended that information hubs/digital platform should be created for delegates to circulate information of the National Agenda and other relevant materials for the COP 28.

All participants agreed to establish lasting relations that would be leveraged towards the actualization of the climate goal for Nigeria.

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