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Osinbajo harps on urgency of improving funding for research, innovation

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Vice President Yemi Osinbajo says there is an urgent need to improve processes for funding research and innovation in Nigeria.

Osinbajo’s spokesman Laolu Akande in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja, said the vice president said this when he met with the National Research and Innovation Council at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The vice president said that such funding would build local capacity to compete favourably with scientifically advanced economies.

Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, Minister of Science and Technology, had earlier presented a memo to the council for improved funding of research and innovation by setting aside one per cent of the national budget for research purposes in public institutions.

The vice president said the proposal to set aside a percentage of the national budget for funding of research and innovation deserved support.

“The point that has to be made is that there is really an urgent need to improve funding for research and innovation in our country.

“Whether it is research in agriculture, education or environment, we have to adopt steps and measures on how to improve funding in these areas.

“It is really the whole idea of setting targets on how to achieve objectives set for research and innovation,” he said.

Osinbajo directed that plans to refine the processes for investing more in research and innovation be expedited in order to develop more local technology to address emerging challenges.

The meeting, which is the first for the year 2020, had in attendance the Ministers of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu; Environment, Mr Mohammed Mahmoud; Water Resources, Alhaji Suleiman Adamu; and Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed.

Other were Ministers of Sports and Youth Development, Mr Sunday Dare; Women Affairs, Mrs Pauline Tallen; Aviation, Alhaji Hadi Sirika; Labour and Employment, Dr Chris Ngige; Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire; and Communications and Digital Economy, Alhaji Ali Pantami.

Also at the meeting were Ministers of State for Budget and National Planning, Mr Clement Agba; Science and Technology, Alhaji Mohammed Abdullahi; and Education, Mr Emeka Nwajuiba.

Edited By: Donald Ugwu (NAN)