Calabar — SPECIAL Adviser to Governor Liyel Imoke of Cross River State on Economic Affairs and Vice Chairman, State Planning Commission, Prof. Ndem Ndiyo, has said that policy makers in the country should be held responsible for the damage to the nation's environment.
Prof. Ndiyo, in Calabar, at the Joint Nigeria-Ghana CDKN Climate Change Seminar, held at the Senate Chambers, University of Calabar, noted that the three tiers of government shared the excess crude money which came from the environment but no fraction of the money was used to remedy the damaged environment, adding that there was nothing wrong with using a fraction of the money to repair the damaged environment.
He said: "Every now and then, the three tiers of government, local, state and federal, share what they call excess crude account. Have we sat down to reflect on what brought about the excess crude and what is to be done about the environment where the excess crude comes from?"
He noted that there was much talk about Gross Domestic Product and significantly, Nigeria's GDP was based on oil, adding, "the oil GDP is environmentally destructive, so there is need for us to be committed to a green environment because the future of this country lies in the environment."
Ndiyo emphasised that the national budget should give priority to the environment because much of the resources that generated the fund for the budget were derived from the environment, adding: "When constructing roads, houses, and other infrastructure, we should segregate the green area to ensure that we are growing environmentally friendly."
He said Nigerians should strive to put those that will be environment friendly into power.
Also speaking, Dean of Graduate School, University of Calabar, Professor Francis Bisong, who presented a paper on Climate Change Science and Practice Options for Training and Research Response from the Academia, said the climate change was more rapid than what many people can reckon.