The Minister of Science Technology and Innovation (FMSTI), Sen. Adeleke Mamora has hailed science as the bedrock of any meaningful development.
Mamora made this known at the 2022 World Science Day celebration in Abuja, themed “Basic Science for Sustainable Development”.
Science and development aim to create awareness of how science contributes to sustainable development, international solidarity, international cooperation and science for the benefit of mankind.
“There can be no growth and development of any nation without the cooperation and utilisation of science.
“Any government that invests in science, technology and innovation (STI) rates high in GDP.
“The goal of STI is to move from resources to a knowledge-based economy,” he said.
Mamora stressed that scientific thinking should be encouraged even at the primary school level.
“In our efforts to encourage the interest of students in basic science in the country, the ministry has been organising the 774 Young Nigeria Scientist Presidential award annually to encourage the interest of Nigerian youths. The cash award of N1million [goes] to the first winner, N750,000 to the second winner, N500,000 to the third winner and a scholarship to doctorate level to any university of their choice.”
Speaking further Mamora said through STI the nation can create more jobs, generate wealth, reduce poverty, strengthen the naira, and stimulate the growth of the economy.
“All over the world, the relevance of STI cannot be over-emphasised. There is no gainsaying the usefulness of STI, as it critical to all areas of human endeavours. As you are aware, economic success on the world stage and industrial leadership of nations and corporate bodies today are driven by STI. It is a matter of common knowledge that countries which have made giant strides in sustainable economic development owe such feat to heavy investments in STI, which guarantees continuous productivity growth and potential for inclusive and sustainable industrial development/revolution.
“The most visible sign of life, be it of an individual or corporate body, is growth. Once growth stops, decline sets in. It, therefore, follows that the greater the achievement, the greater the challenge of growth. Like all corporate bodies, we face the challenge to continuously improve upon existing achievements; hence, we have invited you here for us to rub minds together on ways of growing Nigeria’s science, technology and innovation (STI) system at a rate that will enable it to play leading roles in the process of national technological and economic development.”
In his speech, the Minister of State for STI, Chief Henry Ikoh stressed that one thing that can make one’s life better is science and its application.
“Science has improved everything in the world today; from the food we eat to the cloth we wear and the technology we use,” Ikoh said.
Prof. Uno Uno of the FUT Minna, in his speech, said that basic science is biology, mathematics, chemistry and physics. “Biology helps to understand the nature. Chemistry provides solutions to health problems and [to] understand the world. Mathematics concerns numbers and physics is the study of matter, motion, energy and force.
“Sustainable development improves human capital, social investing and creating services while sustainable development provides our basic needs.”
In his address, the director of the United National Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), Dr. Dimitri Santa represented by professional officer, science, UNESCO, Dr. Enang Moma promised that UNESCO will continue to promote and support science technology engineering and mathematics (STEM) education for sustainable development in Nigeria.
The secretary general, Nigeria National Commission For UNESCO (NATCOM-UNESCO), Mr. Olagunjua Idowu disclosed that on December 2, 2021, the International Year of Basic Science for Sustainable Development was proclaimed by the 76th Session of the United Nations General Assembly for 2022, stressing that the applications of basic sciences are vital for advances in medicine, industry, agriculture, water resources, energy, environment, communication and culture which will, in turn, increase societal well-being and promote peace and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Idowu, represented by Ayara Eunice said: “The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aim to transform our world. They are a call to action towards ending poverty and inequality, protecting the planet and ensuring that everyone enjoys good health, justice and prosperity.
“The importance of basic science to our daily lives cannot be over-emphasised. Therefore, the onus lies on us to make sure that we protect the planet we live in and for the benefit of the future generation.”