Scholars, policymakers, private sector practitioners, and other stakeholders in the field of environment and development have commended EfD Nigeria for developing a strategic plan that will guide the activities of the center from 2022 to 2026. The plan is expected to contribute to sustainable development in Nigeria.
EfD Nigeria consulted with the stakeholders in Abuja on April 12, 2022, to seek their input on the strategic plan, which, hopefully, will facilitate their buy-in during implementation.
Has conducted successful activities
EfD Nigeria has since its inception in 2019, conducted policy-relevant research resulting in over 28 publications. Engaged policymakers have based decisions on those research findings.
Some other activities of the center include: the development of pilot natural capital accounts for Nigeria, advocacy for the review of Nigeria's Fishery Act, capacity building and training for government technical staff, and a workshop for journalists to enhance reporting of environmental issues.
Seeks to influence policies
The strategic plan will help the center pursue and achieve specific objectives through research, policy engagements, and capacity building for researchers, government staff, and individuals from the private sector, commented Dr. Nnaemeka Chukwuone, Center Director at EfD Nigeria.
“Our target is to use research to influence policies that will make our environment better” he said.
Much more is needed
Vice-Chancellor of the University of Nigeria, Professor Charles Igwe, commended the center for its achievements but noted that lots more need to be done to help Nigeria solve its numerous environmental problems.
However, he noted that the absence of a specific budget for research in the federal budget of universities in Nigeria was a challenge for research institutions and centers like EfD Nigeria. He urged the center to wade through the odds and use the strategic plan to seek funding and achieve focused interventions in the core areas of its mandate.
Professor Emmanuel Oladipo, the Chairman of the REPRC Policy Advisory Panel, suggested that the Nigerian government set up a National Research Council responsible for determining the country's problems and commission universities and centers like EfD Nigeria to conduct solutions-oriented research.
Draft copies of the strategic plan were earlier circulated to the stakeholders for detailed input. The Strategic Plan Committee will do a final collation led by its Chairman, Professor Anthonia Achike, a Senior Research Fellow at EfD Nigeria.
Report by Inya Agha Egwu