By JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
A bill for an act to establish Scientific Council of Nigeria should be developed and sponsored to regulate all scientific researches and applications in the country, the Vice-Chancellor, Ahmadu Bello University, Prof. Kabiru Bala, has said.
This was contained in a statement signed by the Public Affairs Directorate, Office of the Vice-Chancellor Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, on Tuesday July 4, 2023.
The Vice-Chancellor, who made the call when he declared open the 55th Annual Conference of Science Association of Nigeria (SAN) at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, also canvassed that SAN should have representation on the board of government agencies regulating the production, distribution and use of all science-based products in Nigeria.
Prof. Bala further suggested that the next SAN conference should witness more participants from industries, government agencies, private establishments and the international community.
Represented by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Administration, Prof. Ahmed Doko Ibrahim, the Vice-Chancellor stressed that the need to nurture and create an enabling environment where scientific researches thrived was important in any educational establishment.
Ahmadu Bello University, according to him, decided to be at the forefront in matters regarding scientific innovations despite challenges of funding and government bureaucracy.
“Just as few weeks ago, our students excelled as global champions in the recently organised Huawei ICT Global Competition held in China in May this year.
“These students were trained here in ABU, Zaria and not anywhere else. This shows the quantum of scientific knowledge inherent in our own people and what is needed is the will and resources to present them to the world”, he said.
He said that this year’s conference with the theme “The Role of Science and Technology in the Enhancement of Global Security and Socio-Economic Development” was christened to x-ray the past, present, and future as far as scientific research and applications were concerned.
The Vice-Chancellor lauded the efforts to Tetfund for making funds available for quality researches through its National Research Fund (NRF) and Institutions-Based Research (IBR) campaigns in addition to research finding opportunities offered by institutions such as the Raw Materials Research Development Council (RMRDC) and Petroleum Technology Development Fund (PTDF) among others.
Prof. Bala, however, noted that the crucial problem being faced in the Nigerian scientific community was the translation of these researches into practicable applications.
The National President, Science Association of Nigeria (SAN), Prof. Hamza Abba, had earlier told the gathering that the conference theme was apt and timely as the importance of science and technology in enhancing global security and socio-economic development could not be over-emphasized.
He explained that the Association had, in its 65 years of existence, made considerable impact on the growth and development of Nigeria’s scientific space in addition to playing a significant role in fashioning government policies for science and technology.
Prof. Abba also said that since its inaugural conference at the University College, Ibadan in 1958, SAN had been holding annual conferences across the country to avail Nigerian Scientific community the opportunity to interact, network, discuss and share ideas on issues of interest in the scientific clime.