With seven years to the end of the Sustainable Development Goals, the Federal Government says, it remains committed to the full Implementation of all the Development Goals, tasking the private sector to contribute to an all-inclusive development by promoting economic growth and job creation.

The Senior Special Assistance to Nigeria’s President on SDG, Mrs Adejoke Orelope Adefulure gave the information while declaring open a one-day International Conference of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile -Ife Osun State.

Mrs Adefulure explained that the Federal Government had provided a conducive environment for entrepreneurship and innovation to thrive in Nigeria, as well as promoted peace and security which remain very key essential elements of the SDGs.

“At the National level, our office is working closely with the Federal Ministries, Departments, and Agencies of Government to integrate them with our several policies and plans. This will enable them to channel resources towards achieving the goal and priorities social, economic, and environmental of government activities both at the national and sub-national levels.”

She hinted that the federal government had also established a multi-stakeholder platform to deliver Nigeria’s SGD implementation plan from 2020 to 2030.

“At the sub-national, similar institutional structures have been adopted by the 36 States and the Federal Capital Territory and a coordination office. “

In a panel discussion on the theme, Accelerating All-inclusive Development: The Nigeria Journey Towards the Achievement of Sustainable Development Goals, scholars identified challenges impeding the effective implementation of the SDGs in Nigeria.

One of them is a former Vice Chancellor of Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko, Professor Femi Mimiko who hinged the limitations of the 17 goals to impact the daily lives of citizens on issues connected with politics and governance.

“It is significant that none of the 17 SDGs are expressly on politics and governance. These two are the critical elements that will give you a hint about every other thing you need to do. You want to mainstream gender, build economic development, and make youth involved, it has to do with the nature of Politics and the governance system you have in place. Unfortunately, we don’t have that amongst the 17.”

“The truth is that economic programming is a function of the kind of Politics we have in society. Economic decisions are a product of the political process. The Political process is key, governance structures are very important to be able to make meaning of all the 17 SDGs. unfortunately, that is missing.” Professor Mimiko noted.

Also contributing, a former Commissioner of Budget and Planning in Osun State, Professor Olalekan Yinusa canvassed proper coordination among the three tiers of government for effective implementation of policies and programmes like the SDGs.

“Most local government areas in the country don’t have local government development plans. So that whatever resources that are coming to the local government will have a blueprint that will be the foundation of the choice of projects and programmes that will be implemented, especially in the area of water, education, and health so they don’t need to rely on the state level for their implementation.”

Some other contributors described the problems facing Nigeria as not want of policies, but the poor implementation of the policies due to a lack of will by the governments.

Earlier in an address of Welcome, the Vice Chancellor of Obafemi Awolowo University, Professor Adebayo Banire commended the organizers for bridging the gap between the academics, the community, policymakers, and the policies. 

Professor Banire noted that Nigeria did not meet the goals of the Millennium Development Goals that ended in 2015, hoping that with seriousness, the country may meet the SDG goals.

Adenitan Akinola

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