Reps Propose Deadline On Gas Flaring

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Dimeji Bankole, has disclosed that the House of Representatives will soon come with a definite deadline within which all multinational companies in Nigeria must end the flaring of gas.

The speaker said this yesterday while inaugurating the newly created House Committee on Climate Change.

“This committee is expected to collaborate with other stakeholders to draw up a final deadline within which the multinational companies will stop flaring of gas in Nigeria “.

Bankole expressed concern over the 1.5 million dollars captured in the 2009 budget for Ministry of Environment which he said would not be enough to address environmental issues.

He added that in the “Supplementary budget proposal, we may decide to take this even more seriously”.

The speaker said the House is currently working on a bill to establish a National Climate Change Commission to address the problem of environmental degradation in the country.

Earlier, while presenting his welcome address, the chairman of the committee, Hon Eziuche Ubani said the “Committee would ensure legislative scrutiny and oversight over treaties and agreements that are likely to arise from the coordinated efforts under the United Nations framework on climate change”.

He warned that the issue of global change should not be treated with kid gloves as “The future of every country will depend on what it does now to address climate change, especially if we understand the nexus between climate change and energy use”.

Ubani called for support from stakeholders in order to effectively execute the mandate of the committee and to embark on a “Massive advocacy drive to educate Nigerians on the reality and consequences of climate change and efforts necessary to mitigate or adapt to its effects”.

in their separate presentations, the counsellor of climate change to the government of Denmark , Peter Krogh Serenson and the British High Commissioner to Nigeria , Mr Bob Dewar, called for political will by the government to combat the effects of climate change in Nigeria .

Meanwhile, the speaker of the House of Representatives had disclosed that it would amend the National Planning Act to make the commission more effective and responsive to the nation’s needs and ensure that the process is done transparently by the relevant organisations.

He said this while inaugurating the committee on international donors and civil society under the chairmanship of Hon. Nnenna Ukeje.

“We need to see the grassroots impact of development funds on our citizens. The practice where chunks of donor fund administrators go to service the pleasures of donor fund administrators or pay for excessively priced technical assistance will need to change.

“The people who make the decisions concerning projects and needs are too far removed from the people who should benefit from them and are powerless to make any contribution”.