June 21, 2024

Uproar over Nigeria’s COP-28 delegation: Presidency clarifies 1,411-person team composition

… , lists 67 people from Presidency, VP’s Office -9, Senate/Reps -40, MDAs- 306


Oredola Adeola


Following the public outcry over the large Nigerian delegation to the COP-28 Climate Summit in Dubai, the Presidency has provided clarification. According to the Presidency, the fully funded delegation consists of 422 persons, with 67 from the Presidency, 9 from the Office of the Vice President, 40 from the National Assembly, and others from Federal Parastatals/Agencies.


Concerned Nigerians and politicians had picked holes in the number of delegates from Nigeria at the summit demanding a roll call and cost incurred by Federal Government delegates, and also urged the National Assembly to probe the incident.


The Presidency in a statement in a statement released by the Ministry of Information and National Orientation and obtained by EnergyDay on Monday following the backlash and the public conversation on the number of delegates from Nigeria attending the ongoing conference.


The Presidency claimed Nigeria’s representation at the pre-eminent Climate Change Conference, attended this year (COP-28) by more than 70,000 participants and delegates from over 100 countries, is very much in line with the country’s status as Africa’s leading Sovereign voice and player in climate action.


Nigeria sent a large delegation of 1,411 members to the ongoing COP28 climate summit in Dubai, making it the joint third largest delegation with China, after the host nation UAE and Brazil.


The statement said parties to the convention from Nigeria include government officials, representatives from the private sector, civil society, the voluntary sector, state governments, media, multilateral institutions, representatives of marginalised communities, and many others.


The Presidency said the Federal Government-funded delegation was made up of a total of 422 persons including the National Council on Climate Change (32), the Federal Ministry of Environment (34), all Ministries (167), and the Presidency 7). ) Office of the Vice President (6), National Assembly (40), and Federal Parastatals/Agencies (73).


It said, “It is imperative to point out that the 1,411-Nigerian delegation to COP-28 comprises Government-sponsored (Federal and State Governments) and non-government-sponsored participants (from Private Companies, NGOs, CSOs, Media, academia, etc). 


“As the biggest economy and most populous country in Africa, with a substantial extractive economy and extensive vulnerability to climate change, Nigeria has a significant stake in climate action, and our active and robust participation at COP is therefore not unwarranted.


“COP-28 presents an array of investment and partnership opportunities for the various sectors affected by climate change.


“Nigeria is already benefiting from its ongoing participation, as demonstrated by Nigeria and Germany signing an accelerated performance agreement to expedite the implementation of the Presidential Power Initiative (PPI) to improve Nigeria’s electricity supply.


The agreement was signed by Mr. Kenny Anuwe, the Managing Director and CEO of FGN Power Company, and Ms. Nadja Haakansson, Siemens Energy’s Senior Vice President and Managing Director for Africa, at a ceremony witnessed by President Tinubu and Chancellor Scholz.


“President Tinubu hosted a high-level meeting with stakeholders and investors on the Nigeria Carbon Market and the Electric Buses Rollout Programme on the margins of the COP28 climate summit.


“The President unveiled the Nigeria Carbon Market Activation Plan, co-chaired by the Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr. Zacch Adedeji, and the Director-General of the National Council on Climate Change (NCCC), Dr. Dahiru Salisu.


“The Electric Buses program is only the first step in a series of innovative, clean, modern, and sustainable initiatives across diverse sectors, all aimed at simultaneously addressing climate change-related challenges, reducing carbon footprint, modernizing infrastructure systems, and positioning Nigeria as an attractive destination for global investments” the statement confirmed.


The Presidency further claimed that Nigeria stands to benefit from the Loss and Damage Fund established during COP-27 in Egypt and formally operationalized at the opening plenary of COP-28 in Dubai.


“The Fund will provide substantial non-debt financing to support countries most affected by the impact of climate change. Hundreds of millions of dollars have already been pledged as contributions to the Fund.


“The President also met the President of UAE to concretize engagements between the two countries. This is aside from the bilateral talks held with several countries and multilateral partners,” it said.