By Sylvester Thompson
Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, the Minister of Science and Technology, has charged universities, tertiary and research institutions to intensify research and development in critical areas of science for positive impact on Nigerians.
This is contained in a statement issued by Blessing Ezeala of the Press and Public Relations of the ministry on Wednesday in Abuja.
The minister gave the charge when he visited the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) to inspect the Made-in-Nigeria 500 KVA Gasification Plant, manufactured from organic waste for electric power generation.
Onu, who commended the innovation, said it came at a time when Nigeria was in the process of actualising its dream of being an industrialised nation.
He said that he was convinced that in future, the innovation would be patronised by individuals, industries and the Organised Private Sector, among others.
The minister advocated for the innovation to be inculcated into Schools of Engineering curriculum with the hope that it would improve youthful participation in Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) entrepreneurship.
“I encourage the establishment of multi-disciplinary teams of students to focus on generating electricity for off-grid and under-served locations in the country.
“This will attract many youths as entrepreneurs in the energy sector,’’ he said.
The minister further said that his ministry would cooperate with the university on its achievement, with the hope that the innovation would be of great value to the nation.
Earlier, Prof. Charles Igwe, UNN Vice Chancellor, solicited support of the Federal Government to enable the university to commercialise the innovation.
The director and team leader of the innovation, Prof. Emenike Ejiogu, also said that the invention was researched and manufactured in Nigeria with all the raw materials locally sourced.
He disclosed that the gasification technology was the conversion of organic solid waste to gas which could be used to generate power. (NAN)