President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria will at the release Nigeria’s final status report on the operation of the Millenium Development Goals MDGs in New York on September 28.
Hilary Ogbonna, acting regional coordinator for Africa, United Nations Millennium Campaign at the United Nations, confirmed that Buhari is set to address the Assembly at the global body’s headquarters.
Nigeria, during the general assembly, will also on the sideline host an event on Health, HIV/AIDS and Strengthening the Implementation of the SDGs.
Ogbonna said: “One of the major aspects that you need to know about the MDGs is that it focused on the three dimensions of sustainable development: the economic dimension, the social dimension and the environmental dimension. Nigeria should be a leading voice on climate change.
“Nigeria does not emit much of fossils, of carbon dioxide. But Nigeria, like most parts of Africa, is feeling the pinch. Lake Chad is also disappearing. So, Nigeria needs to be a leading voice on that. Nigeria needs to speak very strongly on climate change and how it impacts on poor people in this country. Nigeria needs to also speak strongly about global partnerships. It needs to show that it is open for business. Nigeria needs partnership and investment, not aids, and so also does the rest of Africa. Those are some of the things we would want Buhari to say.
“We will also want President Buhari to speak that his government is being reformed, that governance in Nigeria is being reformed. He should make commitments to come back home and pursue the fight against corruption effectively, because unless you have a corruption free society, you cannot be talking about achieving sustainable development.”
He added: “Nigeria also needs to talk about the financing of the post- 2015 development agenda, financing, using local innovative means, especially in an environment that has this global oil crisis that we are facing now. This means that we need to develop other sources of revenue accruals. The President needs to speak on that. But beyond speaking on that, he needs to come home and implement that. Nobody can develop your country more than you. Whatever he says at the General Assembly, he needs to address them at home.
“He also needs to address the fact the insurgency is robbing the Northern part of Nigeria human development, and until those insurgencies are taken care of, the North East may not actually speak of implementing the SDGs.”
The UN meeting is the second trip to the United States since Buhari became Nigerian president.
American President Barack Obama hosted Buhari at the White House on Monday, July 20, where the two discussed cooperation between the two countries.
Author: Seyi Olawale.