FG aims to attain food security, says Onu
The Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, says the major focus of the present administration is to attain food security in Nigeria.
The minister made the observation in Enugu on Friday at the end of his visit to the Raw Materials Research and Development Council (RMRDC) in the state.
According to him, we are concerned about our inability to feed our citizens.
“We want Nigeria to be in a position to feed her citizens. So the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology is making extensive contributions on food security for the nation.
“We cannot continue to import rice, sugar and others because we produce them locally.
“Science and Technology ministry is vital because we need research to improve on high yielding variety of seed, to improve on harvest and process as well as add value to produce and minimise wastages.
“Our concern is to ensure that even with our solid minerals, we should not just export raw materials but to process them and add value to them,’’ he said.
Onu noted that the country needed wide range of skills to attain the objective, adding that it would create job and wealth for the nation.
The minister said that the RMRDC had repository of data and technology to add value to the non-oil sector and encouraged investors to tap the resources to invest in the country.
He said that the National Research and Innovation Council would meet in the second quarter of 2016 to unveil the package on diversification of the economy from crude oil dependency.
Earlier, the Director General of the RMRDC, Dr Hussain Ibrahim, said the council had embarked on some projects to improve research development in the country.
Ibrahim said that the council established a fertiliser plant in Enugu in collaboration with the investment promotion council and presented science equipment to some secondary schools in the state.
The DG said that it had also commenced investigation on abundant deposit of kaolin in Enugu and Anambra states for pharmaceutical use.
Also, the Coordinator of the council in the state, Mrs Chibuzo Abiaeye, said that Enugu had abundant kaolin deposit that needed to be analysed for development.
Abiaeye stressed the need to create soft packages for investors to explore them, adding that the council had passed the stage of keeping raw materials but to add value to them.
According to her, this time is no longer for rhetoric but for action. We have a robust data that covers every sector of the non oil sector.