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Minister inaugurates AE-FUNAI engineering laboratory


Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu inaugurating the upgraded Chemical Engineering Laboratory at Alex Ekwueme Federal University Ndufu-Alike, Ebonyi State. With him were VC, Prof. Chinedum Nwajiuba, DG, NOTAP, Dr. Dan Azumi Ibrahim and CEO, PZ Cussons, Mr. Christos Glannopoulos.<br />

The Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, has commissioned an upgraded Chemical Engineering Laboratory.

The facility was equipped through an industrial collaboration between the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP) and PZ Cussons in the University.

Speaking at the event, the Minister noted that no nation can achieve sustainable economic development without Science, Technology and Innovation, adding that universities have a huge role to play in this regard by embarking on production-led research.

He maintained that it was high time Nigeria emulated China, Japan, India and other nations who are taking their citizens out of poverty through research and innovation.

“We want to see that inventions and research works of our universities are turned into tangible products by industries and commercialized to grow the economy’, he stated.

Meanwhile the Federal Government has promised to establish an Intellectual Property and Technology Transfer Office (IPPTO) at the University.

The Minister, while decrying the use of alternative to practical in teaching students, stressed that without practical exposures, students would only have head-knowledge, which cannot engineer industrialization.

He also appealed to industries to show more interest to research and innovation through collaborative efforts with universities to develop the capacities of the citizens, in order to jump-start the development of the Nigerian economy.

Also, speaking at the event, the Director- General of the National Office for Technological Acquisition and Promotion, Dr. Dan Azumi Ibrahim, noted that government’s funding of universities was weak, hence the need for collaboration efforts with industries to promote science, technology and innovation.

He explained that NOTAP is collaborating with the private sector to upgrade laboratories in Nigerian universities in order to make available to them relevant equipment as the country moves from a resource-based to a knowledge – based economy. . In his remark, the Vice-Chancellor of the university, Prof. Chinedum Nwajiuba, noted that the laboratory would improve the academic and research standings of the students and staff.

“We have maintained that results of all research works sponsored by the University should not just adorn library shelves, but must be made available to strategic stakeholders relevant to the research.

“This has really galvanized research activities among academic staff of the University, enabling us also to provide critical data to government and industries to make informed decisions”, the Vice-Chancellor stated.

The Vice-Chancellor also used the opportunity to call for more support and collaborations from agencies of the federal government and the organized private sector for speedy development of the University.

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