The Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, has inaugurated a 10-member committee to plan and facilitate Ghana’s effective participation in the 2023 United Nations Climate Change Conference on Conference of the Parties of the UNFCCC, known commonly as COP 28.
The committee, which is chaired by Deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources Benito Owusu-Bio, has been tasked to identify sources of funding for the acquisition of a pavilion, facilitate the participation of government officials at COP28, planning a Natural Resource and environmental sector PRE-COP28 event and also create a number of events at Ghana’s pavilion during the COP.
Speaking at the inauguration of the committee on Wednesday, August 9, 2023, Mr Jinapor said government has assumed a leading role in discussions about climate change on the globe and that there is rife expectations on the country to contribute immensely to the policy ideas and initiatives about the climate at COP28.
He disclosed that it is on the back of the huge expectations that he took the proactive step of setting up a committee to ensure that the country’s representation and participation at COP28 is impactful and successful.
He disclosed that Ghana as co-chair of the COP28 alongside the United States of America has an honour and a big challenge of delivering a successful conference and that the committee will have to execute to perfection its terms of reference so as to protect the country’s reputation and image.
“For very good reasons, Ghana has become a leading country when it comes issues of climate action. For COP28, expectations are very high and our ambitions are also high and I felt that very early on, I put together a team of competent and capable people which will be chaired by Benito Hon. Owusu-Bio,” he said.
The Lands Minister also proffered some suggestions to the committee on some the events that they can draw up to ensure that Ghana is well-represented at the conference.
He said “the Second Lady has become an iconic figure when it comes to climate action and I think that we should have a high-level event which will be dedicated to her where she can address audience at the event. I also think that you should have a panel discussion of high-level people. You can get John Kelly and other Ministers from forest countries to join me and the president”.
The Minister also stressed on the importance of highlighting the African story relative to climate change and climate action.
He is concerned that the territory has remained uncharted hence the need for Ghana to explore it.
The Chairman of the committee, Benito Owusu-Bio, welcomed the challenge handed him and the members by the Minister and assured that the committee will deliver perfectly.
He promised to provide the leadership necessary for Ghana to have a successful participation and stressed on the importance of COP28 for Ghana’s climate action plans.
Other members of the committee are Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Forestry Commission John Allotey, CEO of the Ghana Chamber of Mines Sulemana Koney, CEO of the Minerals Commission Martin Ayisi, Technical Director of Forestry Joseph Osiakwah, Director of Climate Change at the Forestry Commission Ms. Roselyn F. Adjei, Head Climate Change Unit at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Emmanuel Okang, the Head of Protocol Unit, Mr. Cletus Alengah and Mrs Juliet Osei-Wusu.
COP28, which is scheduled for November 30 until December 12, 2023, will be held at the Expo City in Dubai.