In collaboration with its partners, We the People, Corporate Accountability and Public Participation Africa (CAPPA) and the University of Abuja, the Health of Mother Earth Foundation (HOMEF), a leading climate and environment think tank in Nigeria and Africa, will host a town hall meeting with the presidential candidates of the various political parties in the nation.
The town hall meeting, according to HOMEF, would concentrate on evaluating Nigeria’s environmental and climate change concerns in the context of available policy alternatives before the 2023 elections.
The meeting, scheduled for February 7, 2023, at the Main Auditorium, Faculty of Social Sciences at the University of Abuja, is motivated by the necessity for the community of environmental and climate justice to evaluate and question the plans and policies of the political parties in addressing the myriad of environmental and climate crises afflicting Nigeria.
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Over 1,000 participants including civil society, the media, professional organizations, trade unions, students and academia are expected at the town hall.
In a statement, Nnimmo Basey, Director of HOMEF said that while the well-being of the environment is a critical factor in a nation where most citizens depend directly on it for their existence, the issue has not been topical in the election conversation.
“The challenges of climate change in Nigeria have intensified in recent years,” he said. “Nigeria, being one of the most impacted frontline countries, has seen an accelerated rate of desertification and flooding, twin manifestations that have seriously threatened security, and food sufficiency”.
He explained that the production of crude oil and gas has resulted in the profound destruction of the environment, especially in the Niger Delta. Sadly, 12 years after the release of the United Nations Environment Programme report on the state of the Ogoni Environment, no significant action has been taken to remediate and curtail further oil pollution in the region.
He noted that the purpose of the town hall was to give presidential candidates an avenue to talk to Nigerian voters about their plans and methods for addressing the important environmental and climate concerns in the country.
Story was adapted from Nigerian Tribune.