The desire for technological self-reliance, diversification of the economy and creation of a middle class has been greatly weakened by Nigeria’s reliance on oil and gas, the minister of Science and Technology, Professor Ogbonnaya Onu, has said.
Onu, represented by the director of Technology Acquisition and Assessment in the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, Adeneye Talabi, spoke at the closing ceremony of the ICTEL Expo 2016.
He said lack of technological self-reliance has impaired the capacity of competent indigenous entrepreneurs from competing with their counterparts from another parts of the world.
Onu said: “In addition, our capacity to develop science and technology and acquire the necessary skills to strengthen our productive capacity as an independent nation in today’s competitive world has been weakened.”
He said the repercussion for heavy reliance on oil and gas made Nigeria unable to produce competitive products in the world market.
The minister said the federal government would continue to support innovations and local content, “as evidenced in the much improved budgetary allocation of my ministry and its agencies in the 2016 Appropriation Act.”
By Kehinde Olufowobi
Source; Daily Trust