By Emmanuel Elebeke
Government Science and Technical Collage, Garki, FCT, has won 2018 Young Inventors and Innovators with a cash price of N200, 000 at the commemoration of African Day recently.
The contest which was first organised in commemoration of Council of Ministers and Assembly of Heads of State and Governments at Addis Ababa-Ethiopia in July, 1999, led experts in the science and technology sector to gather young inventors and innovators in order to explore their potential to enhance national development.
While GSTC, Garki clinched the first position out of 12 secondary and vocational schools across the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja that participated, Government Day Secondary School Karu, came second with a prize money of N150,000, while Vocational Educational Institute, Gwagwalada came third and went home with N100, 000 prize money.
The celebration was to explore and develop the huge intellectual potentials in the Nigerian youth and at the same time, demonstrate the value which Nigeria and other African nations place on science, technology and innovation as panacea for national development.
The commemoration of African Day, organisers said, was to arouse the latent creativity and inventive spirit of young inventors and innovators being one of the ways through which rapid development of a nation can be assured.
Speaking at the event, the Minister of Science and Tech, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, said technology and IPR had taken a global dimension in determining the position of a nation in designing and participating in the construction of international power equation and determining regions of investment by multinational corporations.
He said the commemoration demonstrates the great importance which the African nations place on Science, Technology and Innovation, as an engine that drives development.
“With the increasing importance of knowledge as the main engine of growth in the 21st century, the decision of African Leaders to declare a day for the commemoration of the role of Technology and Intellectual Property in achieving sustainable development in African continent is a positive stride”.
Corroborating the minister’s view, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Mr. Bitrus Baka Nabasu said no nation can develop without adequate deployment of science, technology and innovation.
According to him, “Unless Nigeria develops the technical manpower to attract and domesticate foreign technology for our daily operations, it may be difficult for it to meet up with the challenges of unemployment, poverty, wealth creation and youth restiveness.
He said the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology through agencies like NOTAP, is working seriously in collaboration with other stakeholders to ensure rapid technological development of the nation.
The Director General of NOTAP, Dr. Dan-Azumi Mohammed, affirmed that Nigeria cannot do much in terms of development without investing more time and resources to science, technology and Innovation.
He said STI remains the main driver driving world economies into prosperity and warned that Nigerian cannot afford to be missed out in becoming globally competitive and raise its productivity.