EKiti State Government has entered into partnership with the Nigeria Atomic Energy Commission (NAEC) on peaceful application of nuclear science and technology in the development of medicine, agricultural, and other social economic activities within the knowledge zone.
A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by representatives of the State government and key principal officers of NAEC including its acting Chairman, Professor Yusuf Ahmed on Tuesday in Ado -Ekiti.
On the side of the government were, the Secretary to the State Government, Hon Biodun Oyebanji; Commissioner for Investment, Trade and Industries, Hon Muyiwa Olumilua; Director General, Office of Transformation and Service Delivery, Prof Bolaji Aluko; Special Adviser, Knowledge Zone, Hon Femi Ajope, Special Adviser Governor’s Office, Hon Folusho Daramola; among others.
According to the MoU, Ekiti State Government would receive support from NEAC in the procurement and installation of some sensitive gadgets like Modular Gamma Irradiation Facility to support farmers in the area of food preservation and security, installation of state of the art nuclear medicine and radiotherapy equipment for cancer management, establishment of a Nuclear Information Centre for capacity enhancement and nuclear knowledge expansion.
Other areas included procurement and installation of a multipurpose research reactor for collaboration between research scientists in relevant institutions within the state and for the production of radioisotopes an ingredient for effective Cancer Management not only in Nigeria but also in West African sub-region.
Prof Ahmed explained that the partnership would bring about the realization of the peaceful application of nuclear science and technology in the development of the Knowledge zone.
The NEAC boss disclosed that the partnership would also bring about the installation of some sensitive technical gadgets that would promote medicine, agriculture, environment and other subsectors for the development of the economy of the state and the country in general.
He said NAEC and Ekiti State Government had discussed the domestication of radiotherapy equipment through the use of nuclear technology; a development which would make Ekiti the third hub for efficient and effective treatment of cancer and other related diseases.
“Historically, the Governor of Ekiti State has a vision to promote science and technology and he has invited all agencies of government that has to do with science and technology development and the NAEC is one of the agencies that is promoting nuclear science and technology.
“It is a peaceful application of nuclear, science and technology in the field of agriculture, medicine, environment, in solid minerals and social economic development of the country.
“We have discussed with the state government on how to development especially technology that has to do with those areas and fields, meaning that there may be coming some equipment, sensitive equipment that would be deployed for development of those technologies.” He added.
Earlier in his welcome address, Special Adviser on Knowledge Zone, Hon Femi Ajepe explained that the partnership would afford Nigerians through the Ekiti Knowledge Zone to utilize the huge investment opportunities in peaceful application of nuclear science and technology for research and programme development.