By Lawrence Olaoye
President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, affirmed that Nigeria recognizes the centrality of science and technology in the development process and will ensure adequate resource allocation for research and development.
According to a statement made available to newsmen by his spokesman, Mallam Garba Shehu, Buhari gave this asserance at a breakfast meeting of the Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS) organized by the President of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo in his capacity as Chairperson.
He said technology was aiding Nigeria’s advancement in critical sectors of the economy.
The President noted that his administration was conscious of the relevance of science and technology in national development and as such has a ministry dedicated to the sector, which is headed by a scientist.
‘‘We are concentrating on encouraging our students, at the primary and post primary levels, to love and study more of science related subjects rather than arts, political science and history,’’ the Nigerian leader said at the meeting on the margins of the 33rd AU Summit.
The President acknowledged that while finding resources to fund science and technology related ventures could be a challenge, Nigeria was aware of the huge benefits and will continue to do her best to ensure adequate resource allocation for research and development.
In his remarks, the Ghanaian President said as an inter-governmental organization made up of 27 member states, COMSATS was playing a leading role in cultivating an enhanced culture of scientific and technological cooperation among member states.
He said the body was achieving this objective through capacity building, education, research and development
Contributing to an open discussion at the meeting, Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State, who is part of the Nigerian President’s entourage to Ethiopia, called on the body to structure its operations in a way that creates ‘‘centres of excellence’’ in member states.
Ayade said such centres will help in education, training and research for citizens of participating countries in specific fields and vocations of science and technology.