Nigeria’s Vice President, Prof.
Yemi Osinbajo says the federal government integrates the Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs, in its policies and programmes to ensure that its development planning is sustainable.
Osinbajo stated this on Tuesday at the launch of the Baseline Report and Realignment of the National Statistical System with SDGs 2020 at the State House Conference Centre, Abuja.
According to the vice president, the approach has been adopted in all programmes and policies of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration since its inception.
“This is precisely the approach that we have taken beginning from the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (2017 – 2020); the National Poverty Reduction with Growth Strategy (NPGRS); the Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP)—our short-term response to the adverse impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic;—and now the National Development Plan– 2021-2025 which was approved by the Federal Executive Council only last month.
“Its core components include human capital development, infrastructure and social development, all of which are vehicles for achieving the SDGs.
“More specifically, the Plan identifies as areas of emphasis and action, agriculture, food security and rural development; water resources, sanitation, social protection and health and nutrition.
“These thematic areas mirror the SDGs and anchor the National Development Plan very tangibly to the achievement of the Goals.
“Our approach ensures that the SDGs are central to our national development efforts and are indeed policy priorities for the foreseeable future.
“Clearly all of these policy and planning documents bear the imprint of the SDGs as overarching national priorities.
Vice President Osinbajo said that the federal government is committed to guaranteeing the sustained production of relevant statistical information needed for effective tracking and monitoring of the SDGs in Nigeria.
He explained that it is for this reason that the federal government supports the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Sustainable Development Goals, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) and the entire National Statistical System.
According the vice president, the report will enable government to track progress on the SDGs on an annual basis.
Describing the launch of the report as the culmination of a process which began in 2016 for monitoring and evaluating the progress made in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals in Nigeria, Prof.
Osinbajo said that the achievement of the SDGs would be crucial to ending poverty, hunger, disease, and for safeguarding environment.
“For our administration, our objective of achieving sustainable development, which means creating wealth, decent jobs, reducing poverty, addressing the issues of climate change – is both consistent with the aspirations of the SDGs and central to our entire vision for the country .
“This is why in May 2019, Mr.
President made a public commitment to lifting approximately 100 million Nigerians out of poverty within a 10-year period.
Social Investment ProgrammeHe stated that this national priority followed on the establishment of Nigeria’s social protection programmes: the Social Investment Programme, the largest in Africa, which by itself is an attempt to accelerate the achievement of the SDGs across the country.
“The programme is a multi-pronged approach to wealth creation, human capacity development and poverty alleviation.
“The Conditional Cash Transfer (CCT) component of the programme reaches approximately 8.
9 million poor and vulnerable households and 37.
7 million individuals across the country.
“The Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP) has provided about 2.
4 million loans to petty traders and small entrepreneurs worth N38 billion across the country while the N-Power Programme, which is a youth employment and skills enhancement initiative , is designed to employ one million youths between the ages of 18-35 and further skill them for the job market over a two-year period.
He pointed out that Nigeria commenced the ‘Decade of Action’ for the SDGs, and had started recording modest progress on poverty reduction before the Covid-19 pandemic emerged to undermine the prospects of achieving our aspirations.
“The pandemic as we all know resulted in an unprecedented global disruption of economies.
“While wealthier countries were able to effectively fund massive stimulus and social protection plans to deal with the impact of the plague, developing countries including Nigeria suffered disproportionately due to their resource constraints.
“Yet, to its credit, despite the restrictions occasioned by the Covid-19 outbreak and its fallouts, our SDG Office in Nigeria succeeded in putting in place effective institutional mechanisms at the national and sub-national levels to drive the implementation of the SDGs across the country.
“During this difficult period, Nigeria successfully presented its Second Voluntary National Review Report on the SDGs to the United Nations High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) on Sustainable Development sometime in July 2020.
“The 2020 Voluntary National Review process was conducted by the deployment of ICT platforms to conduct virtual consultations across all the key segments of the society.
“The key findings identified the major successes as well as the challenges that must be addressed if we must achieve the SDGs by the year 2030.
“There is no question that the Nigeria SDGs Implementation Plan (2020-2030), offers a coherent pathway for achieving the expected outcomes in the next decade.
He identified the increased range of reporting from 126 indicators recorded in the 2016 baseline Report to the 141 indicators in the current 2020 report as marked improvement.
Launch of National Development Plan
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, represented by the Director, Macro-Economic Analysis in the ministry, David Adeosun, announced that the country’s National Development Plan 2020-2025, recently approved by the Federal Executive Council, would be launched by President Muhammadu Buhari and presented to the public on Wednesday.
In her remarks, Senior Special Assistant to the President on the SDGs, Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire said that launch of the report underscored the importance Nigeria attaches to statistics.
She added that the implementation of the SDGs required statistical data.
The vice president also inaugurated the 19 ambulances to support and strengthen healthcare system at the sub-national level.
“Nigeria’s development programmes, policies bear the imprint of SDGs” – VP Osinbajo