By Ononye VC
The Senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District, Uche Ekwunife, PhD, has said that investment in Science, Technology and Innovation are key to achieving economic prosperity and national development goals, stressing that investment in the sector is the surest way to create opportunities for Nigerians.

Ekwunife, who made this known on Monday, March 14, 2022, at Eagle Square, Abuja while addressing newsmen during the opening ceremony of a week-long 2022 Technology and Innovation Expo with the theme, “Sustaining National Economic Growth Through Science, Technology and Innovation” expressed her delight that the event-filled exposition was aimed to provide a unique opportunity for Nigerians to appreciate the advantages of STI sector and also the needed platform for interactions between researchers, inventors, innovators, entrepreneurs, investors and other relevant stakeholders that would result in the commercialization of viable research and development findings in Nigeria.

Amongst the dignitaries present were Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu (Honourable Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation), Mohammed H. Abdullahi (Honourable Minister of state for Science, Technology and Innovation) and Hon. Beni Lar (Chairman, House Committee on Science, Technology and Innovation).

Speaking further, the federal lawmaker assured that the National Assembly would do everything within the ambit of the law to fully support the development of the economy, adding that the legislature is making progressive efforts to ensure that our research institutes and tertiary institutions are well equipped with modern facilities, as well as increase research and development funding through the activation of the National Research and Innovation Fund (NRIF) Bill.

“In recognition of the importance of Science, Technology and Innovation, the Federal Government has put in place institutions and mechanisms for sustainable exploitation of the knowledge resources that enhance the Nation’s rapid socio-economic development, thus, developing the STI sector is the only surest way to create opportunities for young people in areas of job creation and to be recognized among the Comity of Nations”, the A-grade lawmaker noted.

Continuing, the Chairman Senate Committee on Science, Technology and Innovation urged government at all levels to create an enabling environment that would encourage discovery and private-sector collaborations. She noted that improved research infrastructure would discourage the country’s best brains from leaving the shores.

Ekwunife, who was recently honoured by the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Centre for Climate Change in recognition of her legislative contributions in tackling the threat of climate change commended Dr. Onu and Bar Abdullahi for organizing the event, noting that it will help in no little measure the agencies under their ministry. “I wish you a fruitful week of activities and positive outcomes that will impact positively on our nation towards achieving sustainable development and moving our nation to a greater height”, she concluded.

Earlier, there was a presentation of prizes to the 1st, 2nd and 3rd positions of 774 Young Nigerian Scientists Presidential Award.

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