Nigeria: President Muhammadu Buhari has pledged improved budgetary allocation for Science, Technology and Innovation (STI).
The president said this while declaring open the 7th edition of the STI- EXPO 2023 in Abuja said that his administration would also look into the welfare and infrastructure to enable the system play its vital roles in catering for the livelihood of the nation.
Represented by his Chief of Staff, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, Buhari the theme of the expo: ‘Actualizing Effective Diversification of the Nigerian Economy through STI’, was apt.
He said this was geared towards showcasing research and development products, goods and services, for the purpose of commercialisation which was in line with moving Nigeria from consumption to production economy.
Buhari further stated that no nation of the world had ever developed without the utilisation of the STI.
The president disclosed that his administration had placed a special premium on the STI sector for the utilisation of local materials and personnel.
He said: ”That was why I personally signed the Presidential Executive Order NO. 5 for the planning and execution of projects and promotion of Nigerian content in contracts, science, engineering and technology.
”The Order is an instrument that scientists, engineers and other allied Professionals were yearning for in order to help contribute effectively in the development of Nigeria.”
Buhari said that the National Policy on welding and welding related fields was approved in Nov. 2022 as part of the Federal Government’s efforts to fast-track industrialisation and sustainable development.
He said his administration had commenced partnership with state governments in each of the six geopolitical zones where technology and Innovation centres were established to serve as a forum of stakeholders in the STI ecosystem.
Buhari enjoined researchers, Investors and Innovators at the expo to be resolute as the nation had confidence in their Research and Development (R&D) outputs which would enhance Nigeria’s economic development and growth.
Dr Adeleke Mamora, the Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation said STI constituted the foundation and driving force in the industrial leadership of nations and business entities as well as economic success on the global scale.
He added that countries that had made significant progress towards sustainable economic development owed their successes to investments in STI.
Earlier, the Minister of State for Science, Technology and Innovation, Chief Henry Ikoh said that the Ministry was committed to ensuring that STI was used to drive the economic growth and development of the country. Ikoh said: ”This is due to its strategy to encourage commercialisation of Research and Development products and services.