Activation of SDGs family in Nigeria targets 500,000 families

500,000 families will be engaged across 36 states in Nigeria and the FCT with the support of 2,000 Youth Volunteers to inspire actions for SDGs in 2020.

The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Development Goals Princes Orelope Adefulire made the submission at the activation of SDGs Families, Communities and Religions Leaders.

Princes Orelope Adefulire who used the occasion to formally signed ‘Action Pledge Card’ stated that there was the need for an inclusive and participatory approach to ensure strong stakeholder engagement in the implementation of the SDGs at ensuring that the vision to ‘leave no one behind’ was attained.

She stressed that the adoption of the SDGs was aimed at creating an open, inclusive, participatory and transparent society for all people with the ultimate vision to give a voice to the poorest and most vulnerable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

UNESCO trains journalists on Gender Based Violence

Journalists have been urged to tell stories that will change the narrative on Gender Equality and Women’s empowerment towards the elimination of Gender-Based Violence in Nigeria.

Media trainers made the submission at a training programme organized by, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, in Lagos for Journalists on Spotlight Initiative, Sensitive Reporting and Investigative Journalism on Gender-Based Violence

Facilitators from Department of Mass Communication, Dr Olunifesi Suraj, and Department of Sociology, Dr Franca Attoh from University of Lagos submitted that journalists need a robust understanding of Gender issues because they have a significant role to play to change narratives on the issue,

The trainers admitted that though gender issue was a sensitive one based on cultural influence; gender must be viewed in a new perspective in the light of changing economy in a dynamic world

Another facilitator, Dr Jide Attah also buttressed the need for journalists to understand the concept of inclusion, stereotype, and strive to produce evidence-based stories with superior arguments that will promote social change.

 The Communications Consultant (Regional Office) of UNESCOMr Olusola Macaulay remarked that the training which attracted 33 journalists drawn from 6 focal states of Lagos, Abuja, Adamawa, Ebonyi, Sokoto and Cross River states was in line with the objectives of spotlight Initiative to end gender-based violence in Nigeria and fulfill Goal 5 of the #SDGs as well through capacity building for journalists

Make Cities Safe, Resilient, Inclusive and Sustainable – LASSMUN Urges UN Member States

The Lagos Secondary Schools Model United Nations (LASSMUN) conference has called upon governments and Habitat Agenda Partners to develop strategic responses to the problems of sustainable urban development and requested international agencies to facilitate the access of cities to climate change mitigation and adaptation financing.

This was one of the resolutions adopted at the First Session of LASSMUN conference held on 10 December 2019 and organized by the United Nations Information Center (UNIC) Lagos in collaboration with Lagos State Education District III, which was attended by over 500 delegates from 132 public schools.

In his message delivered by the Director of the United Nations Information Center (UNIC) Lagos, Mr Ronald Kayanja, the United Nations Secretary – General Antonio Guterres thanked  the delegates to the conference  for getting involved in some of the biggest issues of our time such as peace, climate action, sustainable development and human rights.

“Climate change is an existential threat and the defining challenge of our time. You are the first generation to grow up in the shadows of climate change and the last who can prevent its worst consequences. The world needs your strong engagement to increase ambition, to cut emissions and to hold leaders to account” he said.

The resolution also urges government and Habitat Agenda Partners to make provisions to increase resources for affordable housing and housing-related infrastructure, prioritizing slum prevention and upgrading.

In her address to the delegates, the Permanent Secretary and Tutor General of Education District III, Dr Mrs Olufolayimika Ayandele  expressed her gratitude to UNIC Lagos,  Lagos State Ministry of Education, Principals of the schools, and the  delegates for supporting this initiative, which she said was a unique moment for the students with the opportunity to engage and learn about diplomacy, international relations and the United Nations.

The President of LASSMUN General Assembly Master AbdulGaniu Nurudeen, noted that an unplanned urbanization could generate problems such as pollution, crime, inequality, disease while well-planned cities can facilitate economic growth and sustainable low-emission development.

The First LASSMUN conference simulated three General Assembly committees; Second Committee (Economic and Financial committee), the Third Committee (Social and Humanitarian Committee) and the Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary Committee adjourned the General Assembly till year 2020.

The theme for the Conference was “Make Cities Safe Resilient, Inclusive and Sustainable”.

 

UN Secretary-General appoints Ms. Damilola Ogunbiyi of Nigeria as Special Representative for Sustainable Energy for All

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres announced today the appointment of Damilola Ogunbiyi of Nigeria as his Special Representative for Sustainable Energy for All and Co-Chair of United Nations-Energy. The Secretary-General also welcomes the announcement by the Administrative Board of Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) that Ms. Ogunbiyi has been appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of SEforALL.

Ms. Ogunbiyi succeeds Rachel Kyte of the United Kingdom as Special Representative, Co-Chair of United Nations-Energy, and CEO of SEforALL. The Secretary-General expresses his gratitude to Ms. Kyte for her dedication and commitment to the United Nations, her achievements in accelerating universal energy access, and her leadership in advancing sustainable energy transition in the context of the Paris Agreement.

Ms. Ogunbiyi brings extensive leadership experience and a track record of supporting energy access in Sub-Saharan Africa to these roles. She was the first woman to be appointed as Managing Director of the Nigerian Rural Electrification Agency. She is also responsible for implementing the Nigerian Off Grid Electrification Programme and successfully negotiating the Nigerian Electrification Project, to rapidly construct solar mini-grids and deploy solar home systems across Nigeria. She also developed the Energizing Economics Initiative and Energizing Education Programme, which provide sustainable and affordable off grid power solutions. Before joining the Federal Government of Nigeria, Ms. Ogunbiyi was the first woman to be appointed as the General Manager of the Lagos State Electricity Board, which is responsible for public lighting, independent power projects, and energy development serving millions of people across the State. Prior to this, she consulted for the United Kingdom Department for International Development on public-private partnerships.

Ms. Ogunbiyi is a globally respected leader with a broad and diverse international network in the area of energy development, which includes key relationships with leading multilateral and bilateral partners and the private sector. She is also one of the Commissioners for the Global Commission to End Energy Poverty.

The announcement comes as the world is about to enter the final decade to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG7) – access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all by 2030. SEforALL is an international organization, headquartered in Vienna, Austria, that is dedicated to helping the world achieve SDG7 and Paris Agreement targets.

SEforALL continues to have close ties to the United Nations through an existing relationship agreement, partnerships with United Nations agencies and Ms. Ogunbiyi’s roles as Special Representative for Sustainable Energy for All and Co-Chair of United Nations-Energy

International E-waste Day 2019: Nigeria identifies e-waste management with actualisation of SDGs goal

The first-ever commemoration of E-waste Day in Nigeria began on a strong footing as stakeholders converged in Lagos to mark the Day.

Key stakeholders including United Nations Information Centre, UNIC, Nigeria, United Nations Industrial Development Organization, UNIDO, International Labour Organisation, ILO, the Federal Government of Nigeria: National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency, NESREA, Lagos State Government: Ministry of Environment and Waste Resources, Lagos State Environment Protection Agency, LASEPA, E-waste Producer Responsibility Organisation Nigeria, EPRON, Allied Association in the Industry gathered at the Computer Village Ikeja for a roadshow to enlighten traders and consumers on the threats and opportunities in E-waste. They concluded the event with a workshop.

The Director, United Nations Information Centre, UNIC, Nigeria, Mr Ronald Kayanja along with major stakeholders at the commemoration of 2019 International E-waste Day in Lagos submitted that with the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, E-waste management has become part of the broader quest for sustainability.

Mr Kayanja in his opening remark expressed delight that the realisation of Goal 3: Good health, Goal 6: Clean Water and Sanitation, Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth, Goal 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities, Goal 12: Responsible Consumption and Production and Goal 14: Life Below Water were connected to appropriate responses to e-waste management.

He commended stakeholders in Nigeria for rising to the occasion to give due attention to 2019 E-Waste Day Commemoration.

Director-General/CEO (NESREA) Professor Aliyu Jauro stated that the mandate of the Agency includes enforcement of all environmental laws and regulations on the use of equipment or technology that undermine the sanity of the environment

Professor Jauro stressed that NESREA would work with all the implementing partners at ensuring that E-waste was properly managed in Nigeria.

He hinted that a $2 million Global Environment Facility (GEF) programme had been approved for Nigeria under the Chemicals and Waste Focal programme.

The DG NESREA noted that the programme in collaboration with the UN Environment would be implemented in Lagos within the duration of two years.

Oluyomi Banjo of the UNIDO Regional Office, Abuja while delivering a paper on E-waste Global Solutions: Best Practices and Experience Sharing stated that Nigeria generated 263, 030 tonnes of E-waste in 2012 and pointed that UNIDO would continue to provide support for Nigeria to develop an effective E-waste management strategy.

The General Manager, Lagos State Environmental Protection Agency, (LASEPA) Dr Adedolapo Ayokunle Fasawe said Lagos, with the biggest West African market for new and used electric and electronic equipment, has a great role to play in E-waste management in the country.

She maintained that Lagos with populations of 22 Million people and a market hub for importation and trade, there was the need to promote awareness and streamline regulatory laws in the country.

Mrs Chinyere Emeka-Anuna of the International Labour Organisation submitted that aside from the fact that E-waste has become one of the fastest-growing streams of waste with no signs of its growth slowing down, it also posed a threat to human health, decent work and the environment.

Mrs Chinyere stated that though Nigeria is the 3rd largest generator of e-waste in Africa, with Egypt and South Africa generating 497,000 tonnes and 321,000 tonnes, e-waste should also be seen as a resource for creating decent jobs and fuelling a new generation of sustainable entrepreneurs.

Executive Secretary, E-waste Producer Responsibility Organisation Nigeria, EPRON, Mrs Ibukun Faluyi advocated compliance with the model established for collection and recycling and added that there were lots of economic potentials tied to proper e-waste management in the country.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres seeks support for girl-child to reach their potentials

There is the need to uphold the equal rights, voices and influence of girls as they can be powerful agents of change, therefore nothing should keep them from participating fully in all areas of life.

Director, United Nations Information Centre, Mr Ronald Kayanja made this submission in Lagos at the Raising Girl Summit, an Initiative of the The Green Girl Company, Ltd, while delivering the 2019 message of the United Nations, Secretary General António Guterres

He stated that the day is set aside ‘to celebrate achievements by, with and for girls since the adoption of the landmark Beijing Declaration and Platform of Action – a comprehensive policy agenda for the empowerment of women and girls

According to the Secretary-General, to enable girl child reach her potential, excel in work place, there is the need for investment in 21st century skills, health, and safety.

Expressing delight that today, more than 1 billion girls younger than 18 are poised to take on the future as they are challenging stereotypes and breaking barriers.

‘Girls are organizing and leading movements to tackle issues such as child marriage, education inequality, violence and the climate crisis. As the theme of this year’s observance underscores, they are proving to be unscripted and unstoppable’.

He stated that across nearly 25 years, more girls have attended and completed school, fewer getting married or becoming mothers while still children themselves, and more gaining the skills they need to excel in the workplace.

The Secretary General, General António Guterres however advocated for concerted efforts and investments in their health, safety and 21st-century skills at ensuring that all girls reach their potential.

Messages were also released by Statement by UNFPA Executive Director Dr. Natalia Kanem on the International Day of the Girl, 11 October, UN Women Executive Director,  Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka for International Day of the Girl, 2019 and Ms Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, on the occasion of International Day of the Girl Child,

Several stakeholders including, UNESCO,  GLOBAL Youth Leadership and Girl – Child Foundation Ibadan,  International Charitable Initiative for Girl Child and Woman Development Foundation, Seraphim Outreach,   Heart Minders, Alimosho Local Government, Soar Africa Foundation, Boundless Hands Africa, International Centre for Human Rights, Nonviolence and Safety Awareness and Youth for Human Rights International collaborated with United Nations Information Centre, UNIC, Nigeria to mark the day with several activities.

Mental Health Day: UN advocates stronger investments in services

Goal 3 of the Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs is to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages. Target 3.4 seeks that by 2030, there will be reduction by one third in premature mortality from non-communicable diseases through prevention and treatment and promotion of mental health and well-being.

Within Target 3.4, however suicide rate is observed as indicator of premature mortality , therefore suicide is a global public health problem.

United Nation’s Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in his message to the commemoration of World Mental Health Day has however called for greater action on the parts of all stakeholders to tackle issues of mental health across the world.

According to him, suicide is the second leading cause of death among young people aged 15-29, noting that mental health has been neglected for too long.

The UN Secretary-General pointed that stronger investment is needed as he expressed worry that ‘every 40 seconds someone makes the tragic decision that life is no longer worth living’

At the Commemoration of the event in the premises of the United Nations Information Centre, Nigeria, in Lagos, Experts and Stakeholders also expressed concern that suicide affects people of all age groups in all countries, and that 800 000 people die by suicide every year.

They also expressed concern that 79% of suicides occur in low- and middle-income countries as there are indications that for each adult who died of suicide there may have been more than 20 others attempting suicide.

Those who spoke at the event included representative of the World Health Organisation, Dr Memuna Esan, a Chief Consultant Psychiatrist, Dr Mrs Funmi Akinola and Dr Olu Ajomale of the Lagos Mental Health Desk.

They unanimously advocate effective prevention measures that would restrict access to means of suicide, school-based interventions, follow-up care and community support and training of health workers in early identification and treatment of mental health cases

Low cost bricks converted from Plastic waste classroom

Frontier technologies offer answers to modern challenges in our cities- UN

Diverse challenges including waste management, energy among others face the modern society but the power and responsibility to shape the future of cities and towns lies in the hands of everyone.

The United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres, to this end, has called for steps to alter the way our cities function so that challenges associated with waste and energy among others can be addressed.

The UN Secretary General made the call in his message to this year’s World Habitat Day.

According to him, World Habitat Day, was to remind  “the world that we all have the power and the responsibility to shape the future of our cities and towns in the face of rapid and unplanned urbanization which can generate or exacerbate many challenges, including the climate crisis”

He pointed that this year’s World Habitat Day is focused on  “the problem of waste and the potential of frontier technologies to transform waste into wealth”.

“World Habitat Day highlights the central role our cities and communities play in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.  Well-planned and smartly managed cities can steer us towards inclusive growth and low-emission development.”

“Frontier technologies can offer better and cheaper answers to these daily challenges.   For example, automation and artificial intelligence can help sort recyclables more efficiently. Sensors in smart packaging can help reduce food waste, while other innovative technologies are turning organic waste into renewable energy and compost. And new materials – such as advanced biodegradable plastics – can reduce environmental impact.”

“We must reduce the amount of waste we produce, and, at the same time, start seeing it as a valuable resource that can be re-used and recycled, including for energy”

The Secretary General expressed that with cities in the lead and frontier technologies in widespread use, the world can achieve major advances on the road to sustainable urban development adding that there was the need to invest much more especially in waste management.

Meanwhile, the UN-Habitat Executive Director, Maimunah Mohd Sharif had submitted that this year World Habitat Day was an opportunity to think about how we can all make a real change in the cities and towns where we live.

In a separate message to the occasion, UN-Habitat Executive Director said It was a time for the world to look at ways that challenges that cities face each day and find ways to improve everyone’s lives.

“As hubs of innovation and creativity, cities are the best place to come up with solutions”

She said noted that “One of the most intractable problems that is all too evident in many of our communities, are the mounds of waste in the streets, the effluent in our rivers, our overflowing landfills and the thick smoke from smouldering piles of rubbish”.

Every year our homes, factories, industries, offices, markets and shops produce 7 -10 billion tonnes of waste that are polluting our air, soil and water, killing marine life, contributing to climate change and threatening the health of our planet and its population.

UN-Habitat Executive Director, stressed that this year, there was the need to highlight that sustainable waste management can contribute to happier, greener, healthier cities

NGOs’ are key players in realisation of 2030 Agenda UNIC, Nigeria

Peace and Security, protection of Human Rights, and Sustainable Development form the major mandates of the United Nations.

The United Nations works across the world with Governments, NGOs, CSO’s, and Private Sector to achieve the goals of Peace and Development.

However, peace can not be sustainable without justice.

The Director, United Nations Information Centre, Nigeria, Mr Ronald Kayanja stated this in Lagos while playing hosts to a Non-Governmental Organisation, Centre for Peace and Environmental Justice, CEPEJ, who came soliciting for partnership with UNIC Nigeria.

Mr Kayanja told the team that UNIC, Nigeria, promotes Communication and Advocacy of UN activities working with Resident Coordinator and agencies of the United Nations to ensure that the host country and nations of the world achieve sustainable development.

He maintained that peace would be compromised where pockets of prosperity and sea of poverty co-exist, thus there was the need for accelerated action as embodied in the 17 Sustainable Development Goals which he described as interrelated.

The Director noted that Non-Governmental Organisations working with communities have lots to do in the actualisation of the Agenda 2030 – a plan of action for people, planet and prosperity.

Mr Kayanja submitted that to fast track the agenda, Heads of State and Government gathered at the United Nations Headquarters in September in New York to follow up and comprehensively review progress in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

He stressed that the gathering led to the adoption of the Political Declaration, “Gearing up for a decade of action and delivery for sustainable development”.

The Director cited that activities of the NGO, CEPEJ in the area of Peace and Environment would go along way to help resolving issues around mutual tolerance and justice in the environment.

The National Coordinator, Centre for Peace and Environmental Justice, Comrade Sheriff Mulade lauded, UNIC, Nigeria for its role in Nigeria and hands of support with the NGO in the areas of peace promotion, tolerance between communities and environmental justice.

Comrade Sheriff and his team also used the occasion to present report card of the activities of the NGO United Nations Information Centre, Nigeria.

Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria seeks protection of Aid workers

There is the need for all parties to conflict in Nigeria especially the North East to ensure the protection of aid workers and to respect international humanitarian law and the delivery of aid according to the humanitarian principles of humanity, neutrality, independence and impartiality.

The Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria, Mr Edward Kallon in a statement made the call where he mourned the execution of an aid worker.

Describing the incident as shrinking of humanitarian space, he urged authorities to ensure that perpetrators were brought to justice

“The United Nations calls for the immediate release of all aid workers who are still in captivity”

Mr Kallon also expressed concerned about the “increasingly dangerous and restrictive operating environment for implementing humanitarian assistance in crisis-affected areas, where humanitarian aid worker continue to face challenges as they strive to safely and timely deliver urgent life-saving assistance”

The Humanitarian Coordinator in Nigeria explained that UN in Nigeria is working in line with the 2019-2021 Humanitarian Response Strategy, jointly agreed with the Government of Nigeria, to provide life-saving assistance to 6.2 million of the most vulnerable people in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states.