The current Nigerian High Commissioner to Jamaica, Belize, Haiti and the Dominican Republic, and Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the International Seabed Authority (ISA), H.E Dr. Maureen P. Tamuno, has extolled President Bola Ahmed Tinubu over establishing the Marine and Blue Economy Ministry and appointing Hon. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo as the minister. She noted that the creation of the Ministry would go a long way in enhancing emerging areas of our Economy.
In a strategic move that underscores a commitment to sustainable development goals and environmental stewardship, the recent establishment of the Marine and Blue Economy Ministry by President Tinubu has drawn praise from citizens and experts alike. This visionary decision reflects a forward-thinking approach to economic growth and showcases a dedication to preserving the invaluable marine ecosystems that define our nation. The establishment of this ministry is a testament to the administration’s commitment to fostering a prosperous, resilient, and environmentally conscious country.
Ambassador Tamuno stated that the implications of this step are far-reaching as the Marine and Blue Economy Ministry holds the potential to drive Nigeria’s economy and innovation, create jobs, and enhance our nation’s competitiveness on the global stage.
Equally significant is the Ministry’s role in addressing pressing environmental challenges. Oceans, which cover more than 70% of the Earth’s surface, are under considerable threat from pollution, over-exploitation, and the impacts of climate change, as seen in our coastal areas and hinterland. President Tinubu is steadfastly committed to combatting these issues head-on by dedicating a specific ministry to the marine and blue Economy.
Moreover, this decision resonates with global commitments such as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and the Paris Agreement, which emphasize the importance of sustainable ocean management. President Tinubu aligns our country’s trajectory with international efforts to safeguard our planet’s oceans for current and future generations by prioritizing the marine and blue Economy.
It is worth noting that Ambassador Tamuno, in October 2023, employed her diplomatic capabilities and successfully organize a three-day summit in collaboration with the International Seabed Authority in Abuja. The event centered on the overarching theme of “Promotion of the sustainable development of Africa’s deep-seabed Resources in Support of Africa’s Blue Economy. The event was well attended by A-list personalities that included the Secretary-General, International Seabed Authority, Michael Lodge; Minister of State for Transportation, Prince Ademola Adegoroye; Chief of Naval Staff, as well as Experts and Senior representatives from Nigeria, Comoros, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Sao Tome and Principe and Uganda.
The outcomes of the workshop have informed Nigeria to initiate preparations for securing a contract in the deep seabed to explore minerals on the seabed beyond national jurisdiction. Nigeria will be the inaugural African nation to secure the contract.
Tamuno, who also Chairs the Informal Working Group on Inspection, Compliance, and Enforcement in the ISA, stated that its time for the government and corporate organizations to key into the enormous economic opportunities available as over thirty Contracts have already been awarded to other member states.
As citizens, she said we must applaud President Tinubu’s dedication to advancing our country’s economic interests while safeguarding our natural heritage. The establishment of the Marine and Blue Economy Ministry stands as a testament to the President’s visionary leadership and commitment to fostering a sustainable, prosperous, and environmentally conscious nation.
Amb Tamuna concluded that in the grand scheme, this new chapter in our country’s history is not just about creating a ministry—it’s about forging a path toward a more harmonious relationship between human activity and nature. As the initiatives of the Marine and Blue Economy Ministry unfold, we can look forward to witnessing a transformation that leaves an indelible mark on our nation’s legacy.