The executive vice chairman of the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure, Prof. Mohammed Haruna, has explained that technology acquisition and application is the major difference that exists between advanced and under-developed nations.
He stated this at the book launch of ‘Technology and Wealth of Nations (African Experience, 1899 – 2021)’ written by Dr. Felix Oragwu, pointing out the inseparable relationship between technological development and economic progress of nations which he said the author explored.
According to Haruna, the book illustrated that the point of sail of all economies is the introduction of the manufacturing or industrial economy, stressing the author established that Africa’s prolonged economic plight is centered on the two fundamental challenges of a manufacturing economy.
The book traces Africa’s economic backwardness to its roots – a key problem that has kept Nigeria’s policy makers – handicapped and its economies crippled, the NASENI boss further pointed out.
“The author thoughtfully and masterfully illustrated how colonial Europe excluded technology education in its about 50 years of colonization in Africa in order to perpetually channel raw materials from Africa and prefers to send aids afterwards. Without understanding the economic plot, Africa will remain in the vicious circle of economic stagnation as it is now in over 50 years of post-independence,” he added.
He recommended the book to economic and policy planners, all members of engineering, science and technology family, even as he recommended teaching of its concept in secondary schools and tertiary institutions.
In his remarks, the author, Oragwu said the book deals with challenges of science and technology activities faced by Nigeria in technology production and industrialization of its economy.
“Nigeria, we all know is the most populous and very well-endowed nation in Africa, South of Sahara Desert. However, Nigeria as at present, 2021, is yet to build the domestic endogenous capability and or capacity for the production and manufacture of technologies and globally competitive industrial goods in her own economy, both for domestic use and for export to the global world market to earn foreign currency, and this is in the face of many institutions involved in science and technology activities for economic development and industrialization of Nigeria’s economy,” he said.
He said the book was an assessment of the challenges of Nigeria’s technology production and industrial goods manufacture in its economy, and what to do to resolve them, so that the country can produce and manufacture technologies of production and services in her economy and globally competitive industrial goods as opposed to agricultural commodities and raw mineral commodities in its economy, both for domestic use and for export to the global world market to gain foreign currency.
Earlier, the book launch chairman, the past president of Nigerian Society of Engineers, Engr. Otis Anyaeji, said Oragwu had since early 1970s been writing and “shouting on the roof top” for all to hear, and act on, that science and technology are the way to country building and economic development, descry the book as a great achievement for the economic liberation of Nigeria and Africa at large.