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Monday, October 2, 2023

Science Expo: Exhibitors call for synergy among research institutions

Exhibitors at the just-concluded Science and Technology Expo in Abuja have called for more synergy among research institutions, agencies and innovators to develop the inventions exhibited at the expo.

Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, Minister of Science and Technology

Some of the exhibitors, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) commended the efforts of the government in organising the expo, saying such synergy would ensure the development of the science sector.

They also called for proper funding of researches to encourage the production of locally made goods for commercialisation to generate revenue for the country and engage more entrepreneurs.

Dr Bonaventure Okere, the acting Director, Centre for Basic Space Science, Nsukka said “one institution might not have all it takes to develop equipment and this may require the help of another organisation.’’

“The expo is to expose inventions of people but the issue is how do we harness what we have discovered and do a follow up on them.

“We have to collaborate, we have to patent because somebody might be building equipment and needs a component from another institution or agency.

“The expo has exposed the level of our competence in science and technology, the next level is to follow up so that at the end we will achieve our aim,” he said.

Mr Tarsesugh Solomon, an exhibitor from Benue State University, Makurdi said the institution participated in the expo at the state level and was selected to exhibit at the national level.

Solomon, who came to showcase a “Freeze Dryer”’, a machine that uses low temperature for drying of vegetables invented by the university, said that the institution had created awareness on the equipment through the expo.

Solomon expressed hope that people who saw the equipment on display would request to purchase them on a larger scale.

He called on government to fund research institutions and  create avenues for inventors to assess grants and funds.

“The government should find a balance between researchers and the industries because it will enable the research institutes narrow down their research toward solving local problems.”

Mr Chike Okoye, an exhibitor of artistic designs urged the government to sensitise exhibitors on the benefits of showcasing their wares in subsequent expos.

“Most people who come for the expo do not really know  what they stand to benefit from exhibiting their items. The government should orientate the people on benefits of such fairs to their inventions.

“Apart from that, the government should assist local inventors to promote their ideas to international level.

“It is not enough for us to be here every year showcasing the same things,” Okoye said.

Mrs Angela Anyim, an exhibitor of herbal drugs said the expo, had exposed her to ideas on how to improve her business.

Anyim stressed the need for to follow up on small and medium businesses at the expo to ensure their growth.

The theme of the expo is “Fast Tracking Sustainable Development of Nigeria through Science and Technology”.

The expo is aimed at commercialising research development results, products and services of research institutes and tertiary institutions.

It also aimed at showcasing products of inventors, innovators and the manufacturing sectors including their achievements, breakthroughs in science, technology and innovations.

By Ijeoma Ndubisi

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