NESREA DG assures Nigeria is on right track to achieve environmental free society
By Nneka Nwogwugwu
The Director-General of the National Environmental Standards Regulatory and Enforcement Agency (NESREA), Professor Aliyu Jauro, has assured that Nigeria is on right track to environmental free society.
Speaking during an interview, he said, “ Yes, we are on the right track and we are moving forward. You know that before, there has not been an environment protection agency in Nigeria. This agency called Federal Environmental Protection Agency, which metamorphosed into NESREA, was set up in 1992 during the General Ibrahim Babangida regime.
“It became a full ministry during late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua’s administration. In 2007. Yar’Adua, set up this agency, so, I think that, since then, Nigeria have been getting it right in terms of environmental protection.
“As you can see this is relatively a new agency and with the existence of the EIA and other regulations, I can tell you that we are on the right track but we want government to to more pro-active and increase funding to procure state of the art equipment.”
Also speaking on biodiversity conservation, he noted that the Federal Government of Nigeria has also put up regulations to fight biodiversity.
“Now, we have the Endangered Specie Act to protect wildlife. And, this is what we used to domesticate the Sytels Convention, which was put in place to check illegal, international trade.
“Before now, Africans kill their wildlife and export the parts. You remember the ivory trade and pangolins scales which was rampant before? Nigeria is part of this agreement because, most of the African countries uses the Nigerian route as transit before exporting to Europe.
“Despite that, we have our own hands full of cases which is the declining existence of other wildlife because of bushmeat consumption and it made Nigeria to also domesticate the act of protecting endangered species.
“So, presently, we are reviewing the laws of both the local trade in protecting the endangered species. Apart from that, government is working on the regulations of all the National parks. We work hand in hand because they are responsible for the conservation of the ecosystem.”