Yemi Adedeji, Abuja
Ogbonnaya Onu, Minister of Science and Technology, has directed the National Space Research and Development Agency (NARSDA) to create a secretariat for the for the study of Atlantic ocean.
The minister also called on Nigerian scientists to show keen interest and deploy their expertise to help studying the Atlantic ocean.
The Minister gave the directive on Monday in Abuja while declaring open the Nigerian/Portuguese Scientists’ Conference with the theme; “Science, Technology and Nigeria/Portugal Collaborative Framework.”
He said the Atlantic International Research (AIR) Centre, in which Nigeria is a participating founding member, if properly studied and managed could be of tremendous benefit to the countries economy.
The Minister stressed the urgent and important need to intensify the study of the Atlantic ocean.
According to him, “the Atlantic ocean, which our two countries share boundary with, has enormous resources which if properly studied and managed can be of tremendous to our economies. Knowledge, about space and the oceans, is yet very limited. Yet, both hold a lot of promise for the future if humanity.”
Onu added; “I am happy that Nigeria a participating as founding member of the Atlantic International Research (AIR) Centre, I invite you all as scientists to show keen interest and deploy your expertise to help studying the Atlantic ocean. I have already directed NARSDA to create a Secretariat here for this programme.
Manuel Heitor, Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education of the Portuguese Republic, who has been at the forefront for the creation of the AIR Centre, will today commission the Nigerian pole.”
He also revealed that the federal government has commenced the implementation of National Science and Innovation Roadmap (NSTIR) 2017- 2030, stressing that the roadmap intends to utilise science, technology and innovation to drive economic growth and diversify the economy.
Onu emphasised that it would also promote commercialisation of the country’s Research and Development results, create employment and wealth, as well as reduce poverty.