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Stakeholders’ collaboration critical to tackling Nigeria’s environmental challenges, say experts

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The Project Lead, Evidence Use in Environmental Policymaking in Nigeria (EUEPiN), Dr. Temitope Sogbanmu and an Environmental Sustainability Expert, Dr Eugene Itua have said collaboration among stakeholders is critical in ensuring evidence informed decision-making in environmental management to successfully tackle the many environmental challenges Nigeria is grappling with.

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They said this at EUEPiN’s 3-day capacity building workshop held at the University of Lagos, funded by the African Institute for Development Policy, for policymakers, researchers and industry practitioners in the environment sector.

Itua stated that collaboration is key in virtually everything as laws are not enough prescriptions to promote the best practices in the environment sector.

“Even if government makes law, it will be activated, who obeys and who ensures that the law works, it is the citizens. It should not just be about enforcement and that is why government has tried to engage the public in creating awareness and manner that they want the residents to be aware of the impact of our behaviour. This is because without collaboration it will be difficult for government to do it all alone,” Itua stated.

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Sogbanmu, who also underscored the importance of collaboration in the environmental sector, pointed out that one of the platforms for promoting collaboration is the workshop on evidence informed decision-making in environmental management.

“The idea is that we want to bridge that gap and bring that synergy between people in the industry and policy makers who are evidence users and researchers and research institutions, who are the evidence generators. We provide platforms for them to engage and discourse and see how we can mainstream evidence into informing decision and research agenda in research institutes. We also have a community of practice within the EUEPIN project aimed at promoting the collaboration.”

A data scientist and acting Director, National Information Technology and Development Agency (NITDA), Dr Victor Odumuyiwa helped to create a portal to serve as a platform for information on environment policy and other documents around environment. “It is an interesting them to gather people who will be using the platform.”

A participant, Assistant Chief Scientific Officer, Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, Adaku David said the workshop was impactful as it has stressed the need for collaboration among stakeholders in the environment sector.


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