Member representing Bende federal constituency of Abia State, Rep. Benjamin Kalu has reacted to his proposed amendment to the Nigeria Meteorological Agency Act which seeks to grant the Nigeria Meteorological Agency, NIMET sole authority to grant approvals and licenses for the establishment of meteorological stations and other related matters, recently assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari into law.
Rep. Kalu who is also the spokesperson of the House of Representatives in a chat with ABN TV said such a legislative feat comes with a sense of fulfillment as a lawmaker especially being a first-timer in the country’s legislative house.
Among other things, this latest piece of legislation by the amiable and vocal legislator is expected to prepare Nigeria for the consequences of global warming which has impacted many areas of national life but particularly, air and sea travels as well as agricultural planning.
“To observe the weather is very key to enable proper predictions to be made for economic planning especially as it concerns agriculture, air travels and, movement of vessels on high seas.
“Without the observatory centres being enough in line with the international best practices, this will be a difficult task to achieve.
“Having 54 observation centres to 180 million people with a massive land mass, when we are supposed to have about 9,000, this is a step in the right direction to begin to bridge the gap,” he said.
The bill was first read on Wednesday, July 3rd, 2019 less than 60 days after Ben Kalu, as he is popularly called among supporters was sworn in.
It seeks to repeal the Nigerian Metrological Agency (Establishment, etc.) Act, No. 9 of 2003, enacts the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (Establishment) Act, to provide for a comprehensive legal and institutional framework for the regulation of meteorology in Nigeria.
Further, it advises the Federal Government on all aspects of meteorology; project, prepare and interpret government policies in the field of meteorology; and issue weather forecasts for the safe operation of air-crafts, ocean-going vessels, and oil rigs in accordance with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Standard and Recommended Practices (SARPs).
Upon identification of this problem early upon arriving the Green Chamber, he put frantic efforts towards providing solution which today has become an Act of Parliament with all the Constitutional backing.
The reaction of the weather is not as predictable as it used it as a result of global warming, this, therefore, makes it necessary to support experts in the field to monitor when it is conducive to fly, sail and plant.
To do this, therefore, it requires that the weather be observed as regularly as possible and as from many centres as possible.
With this bill coming on board, Nigeria is preparing for the sustainable management of global warming and its impact.
This bill is quite relevant to the dynamic of the environment, it is a bill that protects out environment, livelihood, conscious of global warming, and it indicates Nigeria’s preparedness to manage the consequences of global warming.
Rep. Kalu, therefore, expressed gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari for assenting to this bill, making it a part of our country’s constitution.
He also thanked the President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, and members of the National Assembly for giving their buy-in and support towards this Bill.
Not also forgetting the numerous contributions of relevant agencies of the government from the formative stage of this bill to its Assent by Mr. President.