Wife Of the Lagos State Governor, Dr Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu on Wednesday tasked politicians aspiring for elective positions to play key role in keeping their local environment free of refuse.
Sanwo-Olu made the appeal while delivering a keynote address at the launch of the Environmental Bees Club (EBC) in Lagos State.
According to her, aspiring politicians should show love and care for the environment when canvassing for votes.
Sanwo-Olu noted that the EBC was a collaborative effort of different agencies to ensure that the state became the champion of a healthy environment.
According to her, the EBC is designed to ensure personal responsibility in the care of the environment.
She expressed delight in the performance put up by students from different public schools in Lagos in their campaign for a cleaner Lagos that was free of wastes.
“The children have challenged us today. They have taught us that it is not right to litter the environment with refuse.
“They have shown us how to make money through the upcycling of plastic waste,” Sanwo-Olu said.
The wife of the governor thanked the children and their teachers for spreading the gospel of a cleaner and healthy environment for all.
Earlier, Mr Tunji Bello, Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources, said that the global community set aside the World Environmental Education Day to continuously create awareness and encourage individuals to explore environmental issues, engage in problem solving and take action to improve the environment.
According to Bello, it is aimed at identifying relationships and interaction of the environment with man for sustainable development.
“The emergence of Environmental Bees Club in our schools signales a giant stride in enriching knowledge and the need to inculcate in our children the global agenda of sustainable environment in consonance with the International celebration of Environmental Education Day.
“Previously, we had the “Green Hands Club” which metamorphosed into Climate Change Club, with other environmental clubs introduced by various organisations in schools with different aims and objectives.
“The various undocumented programmes and lack of adequate coordination of club activities have led us to working at cross purposes.
“It is in the light of this that the ministry is desirous of harmonising all the environment based clubs in schools and henceforth rebrand them as Environmental Bees Club.
“To back this up, we are also launching a non–examinable standardized training manual for use in schools by already trained club handlers with adequate knowledge on trending environmental issues,” Bello said.
He said that the training manual addresses the salient issues of the state including waste management, water and sanitation and pollution control.
According to him, it also proffers solutions from international best practices for sustainable socio-economic and healthy life style in line with SDGs goal and the state’s T.H.E.M.E.S agenda.
“It is noteworthy that the recent challenges of COVID-19 has accentuated the need for environmental education as it relates to health which the environmental bees club seeks to bring about through enriched knowledge and attitudinal change.
“The training of our children for environmental sustainability represents a future that is secured.
“The environmental education is geared towards developing a populace that is aware and concerned about the environment and its associated problems;
“That is, those equipped through training, skills acquisition and right attitudes to seek remedies for current environmental problems and prevention of new ones, while ensuring that our efforts to keep the environment sound is not short-lived,” Bello said.
The commissioner said that Schools Environmental Advocacy Programme took off in year 2005 during the tenure of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu with the New Era Foundation (NEF) as main facilitator.
“This gave the impetus to consummation of an arrangement for the Lagos-Bavaria (Germany) Exchange Programme which is about exchange of ideas and exposure of middle level officers to environmental management in Bavaria, Germany and the School Exchange programme.
“Similarly in 2011, the Climate Change Club and what is now known as Environmental Bees Club, students in schools have been exposed to practical knowledge in matters relating to global environmental issues, mitigation and best environmental practices employed by international communities to reduce effects of global warming and environmental degradations
“Also, 31 diligent and conscientious students/members have also benefitted since inception while eight students are hoping to travel to Germany this year at the relaxation of the ban on travelling due to Covid-19 global pandemic.
“Some of the beneficiaries have also received scholarship for their University education as some are currently on Master and Ph.D degrees in Germany,” Bello said.
Bello said that the launching of the Environmental Bees Club and the training manual is a milestone achievement made possible by the support of Mr. Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu and his wife.
He added that the launch heralded a new approach to environmental management and yearns for the support of all to see it unfold.
It was reported that the event had students from the six educational districts in attendance.