The Federal Government has said that it is ready to domesticate methanol fuel production in the country for professionals and expatriates to exhibit their talents and exchange business ideas with their counterparts at home and abroad.
The Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, made this statement yesterday in Abuja when he was paid a courtesy visit by a delegation of the Movement for the Implementation of Methanol Fuel in the Niger Delta (MIMFiND), led by its national coordinator, Comrade Stephen Okenarhe.
MIMFiND is a coalition movement made up of members of the Movement for the Survival of the Ijaw Ethnic Nationality (MOSIEND), Ijaw Youth Council (IYC), Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND), Niger Delta Liberators (NDL), Movement of Niger Delta (MOND), Bakassi Fighters among others.
Onu further stated that the mission is to ensure that the National Policy on Methanol Fuel Production Technology is properly implemented to the benefit of the people of the region and Nigeria as a whole.
According to him, when the policy was approved in 2019, the ministry embarked on several activities to aid its implementation, making her the first country in Africa to introduce this new technology.
“We want to make sure that the mistake the nation made with crude oil is not repeated with methanol. [Howbeit] this requires actual technology by expatriates to domesticate crude oil exploration here in Nigeria,” he said.
He added that the MoU had been signed to ensure that Nigerian companies benefit and participate in the methanol value chain both upstream and downstream, to ensure that Nigerians are involved in all-round exploration.
Onu assured the group that the federal government will make sure the policy is funded from gas-flaring penalty proceeds and see that indigenous professionals are engaged in methanol fuel policy.
Earlier, the group’s national coordinator, Okenarhe appealed to Onu to reach out to Buhari to approve funds from the gas flare penalty purse to kick-start the proper implementation process in affected communities in the region.
Also, Okenarhe said the group was ready to partner with the ministry to create awareness in the region on the importance of the methanol economy to the people and engage the private sector to drive a proper implementation process.