By Adesewa Oyinloye
The President of Global Legislators Organisation for a Balanced Environment (GLOBE) Nigeria, Hon. Sam Onuigbo has led the GLOBE Nigeria project team, and the representative of the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Prince Clem Agba Ikanade, to a roundtable with the National Bureau of Statistics, Nigeria, to discuss the urgency of mainstreaming Natural Capital Accounting into the country’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP) calculations.
Speaking during the event, Onuigbo who is also the Vice President (Africa) of GLOBE International disclosed that for three years now, GLOBE has taken careful efforts to create awareness on Natural Capital Accounting in the country, provided training sessions, and produced a study on governance and legislative gaps in mainstreaming Natural Capital Accounting into the country’s sustainable development plans.
The National Assembly member said for the country to develop sustainably, it must mainstream environmental economic accounting into its development plans otherwise, “it may run the risk of imbalance in development which might affect future generations.”
Making its presentation, the GLOBE Nigeria project team highlighted the critical ecosystem services provided by natural capitals, the importance of Natural Capital Accounting to countries, and why it is problematic not to reflect Natural Capital Accounting in GDP calculations and development plans and rounded off with the reasons why Nigeria must take this seriously at this time.
The representative of the Statistician General (SG), Mustapha Daramola, who is the Director of National Accounts, Energy and Environmental Statistics Division, expressed his happiness for the event. He said the conversation was holding at the right time as the Bureau was already holding conversations on GDP calculations.
Critical decisions at the roundtable include: the need to build capacity of account compilers, secure cooperation from Ministries Departments and Agencies and the subnational; review already developed accounts to know how to expand them and ensure they adhere to the UN SEEA model; rise funds, amongst others.
They agreed that a committee comprising of stakeholders from relevant MDAs and GLOBE Nigeria be set up in the coming weeks to see the process through.
The event had in attendance GLOBE Nigeria staff, Heads of relevant departments from the NBS, representative of the Ministry of Environment, and Chairman of the Steering Committee of the GLOBE GEF6 project, Abdulrahman Rajab