By David-Chyddy Eleke
The Senate Committee on Science and Technology has advised the federal government to fund research in technology to grow the economy.
The committee said growth in technology could help the country stem the tide of unemployment and even earn her foreign exchange.
The Chairman, Senate committee on Science and Technology, Senator Uche Ekwunife, stated this when she led members of the committee on a courtesy call to the governor of Enugu State, Mr. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, at the government house, and also visited some technology incubation centres in the state and Ebonyi.
Ekwunife said: “What we need is what we can use to make our youths self-reliant. The technology incubation centre is a good example of that.
“It can drive us to independence in terms of the things we consume in Nigeria and also make our youths entrepreneurs who will not seek employment but create jobs.
“The challenges of science and technology is finance. We need the federal government to invest in science and technology. If we do not invest in science and technology, we will remain backward.
“Research cost a lot of money and we are calling on the federal government to invest in science and technology. They must fund research, because it costs money.”
Speaking to management staff of Technology Incubation Centres in Enugu and Ebonyi, Ekwunife said, “The reason for this visit is to liaise with you to see how we can advance our technology and also see what we can help you do in terms of budget and appropriation.
“Every quality product is as a result of research, and research is fueled by science and technology. It does not come cheap and government has to do more in terms of funding.”
Governor Ugwuanyi who received the members of the committee assured his preparedness to liaise with the Senate to advance science and technology in the state by supporting the centre.
“The Technology Incubation Centre is designed by the federal government to add value through research. We assure you that we will partner with the centre in Enugu. We will use it to create employment and wealth for the youths.”
The committee inspected products manufactured by trainees of the centres which included; soaps, hand sanitizers, vegetable oil, paints, roofing tiles, cosmetics, fabricated machines and many others.
Other members of the committee who joined Ekwunife on the oversight visit included Senators Obinna Ogba, Alkali Saidu Mohammed and Istifanus Gyang.