As 2018 Technology and Innovation Expo ends on Friday in Abuja, participants have commended the Federal Government for the initiative, saying it is an effective avenue to promote indigenous technology and innovations.
However, some of the participants, who made the commendation in separate interviews with newsmen, called for better organisation in next year’s edition of the expo.
They suggested that subsequent expos should include the welfare of the exhibitors throughout the duration of the event as most of them did not have adequate accommodation and security.
Mr Josiah Nyalwat, an exhibitor of agro driers, threshers, hammer mill, Irish potato processing machines, said he had been sleeping at the venue of the event at the close of each day because of his inability to get proper accommodation.
“Each day we have to look for where to sleep, there is nothing like hotel accommodation for exhibitors, we are left on our own with all the inconvenience of being in an unfamiliar environment.
“We are the ones that have to arrange to bring our inventions to the expo ground and also arrange how to take them back.
“All these are expenses borne by the innovators, this should not be so, the organisers should make arrangements to foot some of our bills to make the expo better appreciated by exhibitors,’’ Nyalwat said.
Mrs Ramota Yusuf, an entrepreneur that deals on Nigerian fabrics, also lamented lack of welfare, saying organisers should endeavour to ease their hardship next time, especially in the provision of security and accommodation.
“When you have to worry about where you will sleep or keep your personal belongings in a public place like this does not bring out the best in you.
“We have come here to showcase what Nigeria can give the world but when we have to worry about where to lay our heads at the end of the day, it does not really make you have total focus and even learn new things from others.’’
Another exhibitor of locally fabricated milling machine, Mr Silas Bulus, however, said his company had made adequate provisions for him and his colleagues, which lasted the duration of the expo.
“Government has made it possible for us to be here, the onus is on whoever wants to showcase his work to take care of himself or his group.
“How many people will the ministry be able to fund their accommodation and feeding or other conveniences? So, for me the expo has been good and I look forward to subsequent ones.
“Commendation should be given to the Federal Government because ordinarily, it would not have been possible for many of us to showcase our abilities to the world.’’
An official of the Ministry of Science and Technology, the organisers of the expo, who requested not to be mentioned, said complaints of some participants would be addressed in the next edition.
He however added that the ministry did not have the obligation to provide accommodation for participants but security personnel were adequately provided in the venue for safety of property, participants and visitors.
NAN reports the expo was organised with a view to promoting results of Research and Development (R&D), commercialising the results as well as products and services of research in the nation’s tertiary institutions.
The expo, which started on March 5 ends on Friday.