By Musbadden Shekoni
PROFESSOR of Mathematics at the Department of Mathematics, Covenant University, Ota, Ogun State, Samuel Iyase, has urged the Federal Government to inject more funds into mathematical research to bridge the technological gap between Nigeria and developed countries.
Iyase who delivered the institution’s 14th Inaugural Lecture described mathematics as a catalyst for achieving technological advancement and reducing the scientific and technological gap that exist between the developed nations and Nigeria.
Speaking on the theme “Mathematics: A Platform For Leapfrogging into Scientific And Technological Advancement”, posited that Mathematics education is the driving force for scientific and technological advancement.
In his appeal to the government, he stressed the need for the Federal Government to invest massively in technological researches so as to attain sustainable economic development.
According to him, the under-development of Nigeria and other African countries in science and technology was to some extent, traceable to the low level of development in mathematical and scientific research, noting “Most developed countries devoted a sizeable part of their budget to education especially for mathematical research.”
While maintaining the need for Federal Government to allocate more funds for the educational sector, he explained that funds provided by government agencies like Petroleum Trust Fund, PTDF, were not adequate for mathematical research.
The don suggested that to boost mathematics research, the Federal Government should compel multinational companies to reserve a percentage of their profits to support research in mathematics and the basic sciences.
He averred that to leap-frog the nation to scientific and technological advancement, there was the need to form a think-tank of top level mathematical professionals to offer advice on the domestic application and use of mathematical tools in solving problems in government, business and industry.
Earlier, the Vice-Chancellor of the Institution, Prof. Aaron Atayero, said that the inaugural lecture was timely to proffer solutions to some if the nation’s challenges.
Atayero, represented by Prof. Shalom Chinedu, the deputy vice-chancellor, noted that the academic environment existed permanent to promote inquired and advance to some human knowledge.