|Minister of Environment, Mrs. Hadiza Ibrahim Mailafia|
The Federal Ministry of Environment has reiterated its commitment to the Abidjan Convention on Marine and Coastal Environment, saying, it intends to participate actively in the 10th Conference of the parties, holding in Pointe Noire, Congo Brazzaville from 12th to 16th November, 2012.
Receiving the Executive Secretary of the Abidjan Convention (under the United Nations’ Environment Programme), Mr. Abou Bamba, at the Ministry of Environment, Abuja on behalf of the Honourable Minster, Mrs. Hadiza Ibrahim Mailafia, the Permanent Secretary, Mrs. Ibukun Odusote observed that Nigeria had all kinds of exposures and issues in the Marine and Coastal belt that would necessitate the country’s participation in the convention.
She assured that Nigeria would do all that is necessary to ensure Nigeria’s full participation. She stated that Nigerian’s exposure to water was quite enormous. “It means that we have a lot to contribute, and a lot to benefit too. And if Nigeria is not part of the convention, then it means that there is no convention. And if we will be part of it then the highest of the related and preparatory activities will have to be here”.
The Permanent Secretary said the Minister’s request for her to meet with the delegation underscored Nigeria’s commitment to the convention and its planned conference. Earlier, the Executive Secretary, Mr. Abou Bamba stated that the Abidjan convention was incorporated for the development and management of Marine and Coastal Environment in West, Central and Southern Africa, ranging from Mauritania to South Africa, and consisting of all the 22 African Coastal countries.
He disclosed that the convention is being administered by the United Nations Environment Programme. He said he was in the country to seek Nigerian’s support for the revitalisation of the convention, which had been dormant for some years. He stated that there was a need to have related activities in Nigeria to enhance the revitalisation process. He said: “Nigeria is not a small country. We want it to play a major role in the conference of the parties.”