Peter Obi, former governor of Anambra state, has called on African leaders to work towards the implementation of the sustainable development goals (SDGs).
Obi made the call at the World Conference Centre, Bonn, Germany, during the Global Festival of Action for sustainable development goals that ended on Saturday.
He said a close look at the goals would show they are development trajectories that would lift nations out of poverty and bring about lasting development.
Obi cited the example of how China used SDGs to lift 439 people out of poverty.
Regretting that African countries have “not taken seriously” the SDGs, the former governor called on continental leaders to work together towards achieving the goals.
“China’s successful integration of MDGs into its national development planning, with effective and coordinated implementation from national to local governments, helped the country to achieve an unprecedented transformative result, using the three most critical goals,” he said.
“It lifted 439 million people out of poverty; achieved universal basic education ahead of schedule; and made tremendous improvements in health care for women and children, and disease prevention and control.”
“In contrast, within this period in Africa, there was drastic under-performance in the three critical goals: poverty rose from 290 million to 414 million persons; less than 70% was achieved in universal basic education; and the number of under-nourished children rose from 27 million to 32 million.”
The former governor, who featured at the event as an expert speaker, therefore, called on African leaders to change the narratives through commitment.