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‘How adoption of innovation, technology can accelerate actualisation of SDGs

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The Federal Government has been advised to continue to adopt innovation and embrace technology to accelerate actualisation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to fast track development. The Director, United Nations Information Centre (UNIC), Ronald Kayanja, gave the advice at the Celebrating The Unseen (CTU) Awards 2019, organised by the Moral Re-Armament (MRA)/Initiatives of Change Nigeria (IOFC), in Lagos. 
 
While speaking on the theme, “Change: Action and Consistency, the Place of Innovation and the Sustainable Development Goals,” Kayanja, who was represented by the National Information Officer, UNIC, Dr. Oluseyi Soremekun, stressed that innovation and technology is central to achieving the 17 SDGs. He said to adapt to the growing complexity of the 21sr century, the UnitedNations system will continue to innovate itself to provide dynamic solutions.   

The UN official said partnership across sectors was important to accelerate progress on the most pressing issues. In his keynote at the event, former Lagos State Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr. Charles Aderemi Akitoye, critically examined the country’s match toward development and submitted that despite its numerous resources Nigeria has failed to rise to its full potential as a leader on the continent.   

However, he said rather than blame the leaders alone for the situation, the followers must be tasked to also take on the task to reform the country’s leadership.“What we need to do is reorientate this nation. At the moment, we are wasting good resources,” he said.  Akitoye said for Nigeria to progress, everyone must know their rights and priviledges.   

While calling on the youth to stand up to fight for change and take on the gauntlet, he challenged the media to lead the change by always telling the truth. 
 
Speaking on, “The Place of Women in Leadership and Governance,” the UN Women Country Representative for Nigeria and ECOWAS, Comfort Lamprey, said paving the way for more women in the political, business and civic arenas is an investment in more than just, equitable and peaceful societies.“Studies shows that women in positions of authority tend to resolve national crises without resorting to violence; advocate for social issues that benefit all, and allocate budgets to health and education,” she said. 

Lamprey, who was represented by Weyinmi Omamuli, said many factors contributed to Nigeria’s poor track record on gender equality among which are lack of political will, weak institutions, and lack of an enabling legal framework for promoting it in the political arena.   She said for progress to be attained, there must be improvement in legal, cultural, institutional and social barriers.   

Earlier in her welcome address, President of CTU, Felicia Odetoyinbo, said the event was to identify and celebrate quiet performers in the society, who had distinguished themselves in public and private sectors.   

“This is the narratives that should be told in our society. We have had cleaners. Messengers, drivers that found huge sums of money and gladly returned same to the authorities and were returned to the rightful owners,” she said.   

At the event, four non-governmental organisations, namely, My Niche Africa, Irobi Programme Initiative, Second Chance Care foundation, Sosia Renewable Energies, and two individuals, Showunmi Michael Thompson, a selfless volunteer teacher, and Julius Ade Iguve the 2019 CTU awards.    


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