Odigha Odhiga, Environmental crusader for Nigeria's forests and head, NGO Coalition for the Environment.
"Odigha Odigha is a leading environmental crusader and politician in Nigeria. Odigha was born on March 3, 1971, at Agbaragba, Ikom Local Government Area. Odigha is part of Cross River State’s Ijagham community. He grew up admiring the richness of the rainforest, only to see the majority of it decimated by the early 1980’s. After receiving his Masters in Business Administration at the University of Lagos, Odigha pursued a political career, experience that has served him well as an activist. Since 1994, Odigha has focused on the protection of the Cross River Rainforest and on sustainable development for rainforest communities. He knew that the rainforests and their communities’ cultures must be protected quickly, or lost forever. In 1994, he founded the NGO Coalition for the Environment (NGOCE) and supported the organization by selling his family’s two cars and converted his family home into NGOCE’s offices living with his wife and baby in one room. Despite enormous odds, Odigha has forged historic victories in the fight to protect Nigeria’s forest. He led the successful fight for a moratorium on logging across all of Cross River State and forced Nigeria’s first Environmental Impact Assessment. He was instrumental in creating the state’s first Forestry Commission, considered one of the most democratic forestry agencies in all of West Africa. Odigha has also helped establish projects that give rainforest communities alternative protein sources, reducing reliance on endangered bushmeat while increasing incomes through economic opportunities that don’t deplete natural resources. Mr. Odigha also works to raise environmental awareness by educating communities and youth, and runs an environmental resource center. In addition, Mr. Odigha represents NGOCE to government officials at the federal and state levels and holds one of two NGO seats on the newly established Cross River State Forestry Commission." 
- Director, Ecoagriculture Partners
Resources and articles
Related Sourcewatch articles
- Directors, Ecoagriculture Partners, accessed December 1, 2008.