The impact of Climate Change is no longer news to the whole world and it has become undeniable that least developed and developing countries most of which are in Africa are feeling the harsh realities of climatic changes more than their developed counterparts.
Reports from the IPCC and the UNFCCC have continually beckoned on countries to cutdown on their emission rate and adopt (newer) cleaner technology; while there’s been efforts and commitments towards reducing carbon emission into the atmosphere; African countries are already grappling and living with the consequences of climatic changes of which they contribute very little to.
These impacts have been observed to infringe on the enjoyment of inalienable rights of humans and the people of Africa.
Premised on the foregoing; HipCity Innovation Centre was invited as one of the frontline climate change focused Civil Society organizations in Nigeria to interrogate and validate the draft report of the African Commission Study Group on Impact of Climate Change on Human and People’s Rights in Africa. The meeting held on the 29th of November, 2023, at the National Human Rights Commission, Abuja.
The draft document was subjected to review by CSO stakeholders to reflect in-country reality. HipCity Innovation Centre ably represented by its Executive Director Mr. Bassey Bassey; made comments to some of the research findings and some of the comments were as follows;
- The impact of Climate Change has impacted on the economic, social and cultural rights of the people, expatiating on the comments; he stated that due to climatic changes; rainfalls and sea level rise has become yearly occurrence resulting to coastal and inner city flooding and have led to the desecration of sacred places such as Shrines, monoliths, disruption of annual festival etc,
- He further recommended that the Right to Biodiversity enjoyment has been breached due to the impact of climate change as erratic climate conditions have led to the destruction of many biodiversity ecosystems where many forest communities depend on their medicine and livelihood.
- In addition, he pushed for the resourcing of research institutions and researchers to conduct research in a bid to innovate on indigenous knowledge and solutions on climate mitigation and adaptation strategies.
- Mr. Bassey called for the NHRC and other Civil Society groups to push for legislative amendment of the National Disaster Management Framework to consider Climate Change as a form of disaster and also incorporate the NHRC into the Governance composition of NEMA, SEMA and LEMA to checkmate and report rights abuses during disaster management especially in the distribution of palliative aid.
Stakeholders made various contributions to the document and called for the effective monitoring and utilization of climate finance to ensure that climate victims especially those in impacted communities benefit from it, to support them in building their resilience and adaptation capacity.