Urgent Actions Needed to Salvage the Sustainable Development Goals in Nigeria

October 25, 2023by Toluwanimi

Development, often driven by immediate needs, sometimes neglects the long-term repercussions, compromising our planet’s health and future. Recognizing this, the United Nations established the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015, aimed at creating a balanced approach to development, considering environmental, social, and economic limitations. With 17 goals and 169 targets, the SDGs aim to address critical global issues, including environmental concerns.

In Nigeria, the pursuit of these goals is crucial for sustainable progress. However, recent assessments reveal concerning trends, suggesting an urgent need for intervention. Evaluations since 2016 emphasize both progress and setbacks, calling for immediate action to realign efforts with the 2030 agenda.

The challenges identified in the recent reports demand a concerted response from both policymakers and the public. To ensure Nigeria’s progress towards the SDGs remains on track, here are essential steps for our nation:

  • Revamping Water and Sanitation Infrastructure: Enhance access to clean water and adequate sanitation, especially in rural communities.
  • Promoting Clean and Affordable Energy: Invest in renewable energy sources to provide affordable and sustainable power to all Nigerians.
  • Preserving Ecosystems and Implementing Sustainable Practices: Foster eco-friendly cities and promote sustainable consumption patterns, combating climate change and urbanization challenges.
  • Prioritizing Peace, Diplomacy, and Cooperation: Foster international collaborations to resolve conflicts and create a conducive environment for progress towards the SDGs.
  • Setting Ambitious National Targets and Investing in Data Collection: Establish clear goals and invest in robust statistical systems to monitor progress effectively.
  • Promoting Partnerships and Innovations: Encourage collaborations in scientific research and data analysis to foster innovation in line with sustainable development.
  • Strengthening Follow-Up Mechanisms and Data Dissemination: Improve data collection and analysis for evidence-based policymaking at regional and national levels.
  • Enhancing Political Commitment and Technological Advancements: Encourage greater investment in technology and innovation to address environmental challenges effectively.

The current state of the SDGs demands immediate and collective action from all segments of Nigerian society. Embracing sustainable and inclusive development practices will not only ensure a healthier environment but also foster a more just and prosperous future for all Nigerians. Let us join hands in a concerted effort to secure the well-being of our nation and the planet, realizing the promise of the SDGs by 2030 and beyond. Together, we can pave the way for a greener, more resilient, and equitable Nigeria.