Don seeks capacity building to access global environment funds

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A don, Prof Emmanuel Oladipo, has urged the Federal Government to strengthen the capacity of relevant stakeholders in the environment sector to enable them develop strategic proposals to access global funds.

Oladipo, who is a lecturer in the Department of Geography, University of Lagos, gave the advice in Abuja.

Speaking on the sideline of a two-day 11th Global Environmental Facility (GEF) National Steering Committee Meeting in Abuja that, Oladipo said the capacity strengthening would enable Nigeria access the funds to address environmental problems.

The don said that Nigeria’s access to GEF fund reduced by 30 per cent due to lack of strategic proposal to get the money.

According to him, government inability to prioritize national issues of environment in the annual budget is also a problem combating access to these funds.

“The challenge we have is our inability to develop ourselves enough to access the funds that are available. To me, that is what we should be addressing as a country.

“How come we have not benefited from the Green Climate Fund and the Adaptation Fund, in spite of the fact that they are available.

“If not that GEF money is normally allotted to states, I am sure; we won’t be able to get them.

“We don’t access these funds because we have not put in place a strategic approach that will enable us to get them.

“Most of the funds require that you meet certain conditions.

“These conditions are more complex than PHD examination; the type of proposals that one is expected to put forward are usually technical and complex,’’ Oladipo said.

He also urged the Federal Government to invest and re-invest in the training of relevant stakeholders in the environment sector to assist in addressing the problem of access to global funds in the country.