The overseeing permanent secretary of the Federal Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, Mr. Idowu Afe, has said Nigeria must take the opportunity to drive technology and innovation to attain a reasonable level of self-reliance and national security through STI.
Speaking during the National Council for Science Technology and Innovation (NCSTI) with the theme “Achieving Nigeria’s Global Competitiveness through Application of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI)” in Abuja, Afe described technology as the cornerstone of progress and the basis of advanced development which Africa needs to move forward.
He stated that the ministry has a new mandate to facilitate the deployment of STI and enhance the socio-economic development of the country, stressing that the country can only make a difference in her search for economic diversification by not only nurturing indigenous technology but creating new technology that will help improve its productivity.
Afe said President Muhammadu Buhari had committed to invest in the development of STI by approving 0.5 per cent of the nation’s GDP for research, development and innovation for adoption of science technology and innovation in national life.
He further stated that, as a way forward, several policies have been developed by the ministry to drive STI and will be implemented through the collaboration of the state government in ensuring that the STI agenda is on the top priority of the 3 tiers of government.
He also said the aims and objectives of these policies are focused on the commercialisation, research done by investors and inventors to create jobs and reduce poverty.
According to Afe, the minister and the minister of state have resolved to drive the innovation agenda of the ministry through the strategic implementation of Executive Order 005 and the development of policies focused on effective competitiveness that led to the attainment of the circular economy, skilled development, health services, security, emerging markets and human well-being.