On Tuesday 20th of September 2016, a roundtable on urban environmental management and the urban planification of new towns organised by the Institut Français du Nigéria was held at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel in Abuja.
Moderated by Sadiq Gulma, a civil engineer involved in environmental issues and founder of the NGO Green Habitat, the panelists were:
David Mangin, architect, urban-planner and lecture (France)
Luka Bulus Achi, urban-planer and president of the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners
Fatima Oyiza Ademoh, CEO of Ajima Foundation
This roundtable, entitled “The environment in big cities of Nigeria: which ecological management for Abuja?” was financed by the D’Alembert Fund, a special fund of the French Institute Paris for discussions of ideas. This event is the second of a cycle that started the 9th of June in Lagos and will continue in November in Ibadan, at IFRA. This event takes place in the frame of the EU diplomacy week in Abuja that was held from the 12th to the 18th of September 2016.
The Ambassador of France in Nigeria, Denys Gauer, reminded the audience about the successful cooperation between Nigeria and France after the COP-21 and the will of the Embassy of France to continue its work on environmental issues in Nigeria. The Deputy Head of European Union Delegation, Richard Young, has emphasized the disastrous impact of climate change that affects the worldwide population. We also had the great pleasure to welcome Iniobong Abiola-Awe, assistant director of the Department of Climate Change from the Nigerian Ministry of Environment, who reminded Nigeria’s strong commitment to fight against climate change.
About 120 people attended this round table. The audience was largely composed of members of civil society, environmental entrepreneurs, members from the Nigerian public sector and diplomatic staff. The speeches were mostly focused on urban planification of planned cities, then the specific case of Abuja. The assistance learned about the history of the construction and the planification of Abuja, then the speakers focused on the specific environmental issues the city is facing today, such as waste management, lack of infrastructures and problem of access to basic services. The question of satellite towns and population growth was raised. The debate was animated and dynamic, and all participants were able to exchange ideas and experiences. A cocktail was held at the end of the event in order to allow people to do some networking.