By Sunday Oyinloye
“I want to place it on records that in all my years of legislative practice, I had never come across a legislator with more passion over a topic as your humble self. You took up the matter of passage of Climate Change Bill with an infectious passion which robbed off on us. With assent having been granted, your place in the annals of contribution towards the preservation of the climate is assured”
These were the exact words of the Clerk of Nigeria’s House of Representatives; Chinedu Francis Akubueze eulogizing Hon. Sam Onuigbo, the brain behind the Climate Change Bill just assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari
Onuigbo who is the Chair Climate Parliament Nigeria also received letter of commendation from Climate Parliament. The body described the Climate Change Bill sponsored by the lawmaker as landmark in Africa.
Climate Parliament says Onuigbo’s vision, leadership, standing and perseverance were decisive for the passing of the Bill in both chambers of the National Assembly and for the assent by President Buhari adding “the Climate Parliament is proud to have contributed to the final stages of negotiations of the Bill and grateful for your role as Chair of our parliamentary group in Nigeria”
They however reminded Onuigbo of the task ahead.” There is still a long road ahead in the transition to a sustainable future and a net-zero economy” said Sergio Missana Executive Director, Climate Parliament.
In the same vein, GLOBE International where Onuigbo serves as Vice President (Africa) and President GLOBE Nigeria also sent a letter of commendation to him.
The letter signed by the President GLOBE International Depute MC Juan Carlos Villalonga and sent from the Secretariat of the organization in Belgium noted that Hon. Onuigbo started the journey in the 8th Assembly when he was the Vice President of Globe Nigeria.
In their words: “Even though you rallied your colleagues and ensured the Bill was passed by the National Assembly, assent was denied by the President. As the Vice President (Africa) of GLOBE International and President of GLOBE Nigeria, in the 9th Assembly, you again took up this very important task that borders on the safety of the world and re- sponsored the Bill
‘’Nigeria Climate Change Act is a key piece of legislation and puts in place key legal frameworks that will aid the country on its de- carbonization journey, provide support for nature-based solutions, provide funding for innovations and adaptation measure, and ultimately set the country on the path of sustainable development. You should therefore be proud of your achievement which is reflective of the characteristics of GLOBE legislators worldwide and the core mandate of our organization”.
It would be recalled that Hon. Sam Onuigbo who sponsored Climate Bill in the 8th Assembly did every possible to get the Bill assented to by the President after it was passed by the National Assembly, but this never happened. However, he never gave up. In the 9th Assembly, he re-sponsored the Bill which later got the assent of the President.
Onuigbo is the member representing Ikwuano/Umuahia North/South Federal Constituency at the House of Representatives and the first representative from the constituency to be re-elected. Since assuming office as a Federal legislator, Sam Onuigbo has sponsored motions and bills that have impacted the lives of not only his constituents, but also Nigerians at large. In 2019, he was elected to the Board of Global Legislators for a Balanced Environment (GLOBE) International, as the Vice-President Africa (the first Nigerian to be so recognised). He is also the current President of GLOBE Nigeria, after serving as its Vice-President between 2016-2019.He is also the Chairman of Climate Parliament, Nigeria.
Hon. Sam Onuigbo trained in Finance, Accounting and Corporate Governance. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators, London; Fellow, Nigerian Institute of Management – Chartered; Member, ASIS International, Virginia, USA and Patron, Nigerian Institute of Management, Umuahia Chapter.