In furtherance of its commitment to establish sustainable solutions to challenges of environmental abuse, the Lagos State Office of Sustainable Development Goals and Investment (OSDGI) has kicked off the 2020 Community based clean-up campaign, imploring residents to take pride in the appearance of their community.
Addressing the media during a sensitization campaign at Alimosho, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Sustainable Development Goals and Investment, Mrs. Solape Hammond described the initiative as an important platform to accentuate the need for the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
She explained that the bold commitment to achieving the SDGs, which aspires to ensure healthy living by reducing threats to human life and the surrounding environment that sustains it, is cardinal in the State’s T.H.E. M.E.S Developmental Agenda.
According to her, the current negative trends of environmental abuse is undermining the progress towards 80 percent of the assessed targets of the Sustainable Development Goals related to poverty, hunger, health, sustainable consumption and production, water, cities, climate, oceans, and land.
“The environment is a representation of its residents; we must desist from activities that debase it. The government on its part is intensifying societal awareness and policy action against the scourge of environmental pollution, it is the responsibility of every resident to support the government’s approach to bequeath a safe and healthy environment for development”, the Special Adviser disclosed.
She stated that the essence of the campaign is to unite and inspire Lagosians to cultivate the habit of caring for the environment, adding that developing robust, coherent, and coordinated solutions that jointly address the menace of the environment further makes the state resilient.
“Lagos residents need to note that protecting the environment is, without doubt, the best way to protect themselves against diseases and other harmful environmental hazards. We should be a community that cares for the environment and works together to make a different”, she said.
Highlighting the significance of sustaining a healthy ecosystem in an economically viable city like Lagos, the Special Adviser noted that a clean environment underpins the delivery of quality socio-economic services and provides reliable solutions to challenges related to urban well-being.
While leading members of the State Volunteer Corps and other participants in sensitizing the people, the Special Adviser explained that the current global health issue has given us more reason to be resolute in addressing the crisis facing nature, affirming that the potent weapon to flatten the curve of the disease and protect ourselves against future outbreak is to maintain a litter-free environment.
“The impact of this pandemic which is in no hurry to loosen a grip on mankind is increasingly drawing our attention to the need to protect the environment against abuse from human behaviour and mitigate the adverse impact of climate change. And our response to the pandemic should stem from the desire to protect nature”, she reiterated.
Hammond disclosed further that the multiple economic, social and health service a cleaner environment delivers is overwhelming and as such, the comprehensive plan of action to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals must revolve around the people.
“One of the main challenges of sanitation is sustainability, especially in a metropolitan city like Lagos State. In order to serve the city’s growing population, sanitation has to be adapted to several specific contexts. Increased investment in sanitation must be complemented with citizens’ resolve to approach the environment responsibly”, she explained.
She reiterated commitment on collaboration with the Local Government Authorities and other relevant bodies at the grassroots in encouraging residents to be environmentally disciplined, adding that local business communities, community leaders, market associations, youth organizations, religious institutions must support this effort at achieving an environmentally sustainable society.
In his remarks, the Chairman, Alimosho Local Government Area. Hon. Jelili Adewale applauded the noble role the office of SDGs & Investment is playing towards creating a conducive atmosphere through community mobilization and public sensitization.
“The rewards for routine cleaning of the environment are inestimable and we are glad that the state government is at the forefront of efforts to protect and give value to the environment across the state. The office of SDGs & Investment through this campaign is encouraging citizens to own up to the responsibility of safeguarding their community from filth”, he explained.
While assuring that his office will not relent in supporting initiatives that will improve the wellbeing of residents, the Chairman made a passionate appeal to Lagosians to improve on their hygiene etiquette and sustain the effort.
The annual sanitary campaign which is expected to be carried out in all the 57 Local Government Areas and Local Council Development Areas of the State will significantly complement the government’s efforts towards the regeneration of the environment.