President Muhammadu Buhari has directed the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI), to collaborate with Dynali Company, a Belgian Helicopter Manufacturing Company, for the local production of helicopters.
According to a report from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), this directive was given by the President at the maiden edition of the meeting of the Governing Board of NASENI at the State House, Abuja, on Tuesday, January 26, 2021.
While presiding over the meeting, President Buhari, who is also the Chairman of NASENI, directed the agency to work towards bridging the gaps in research and technology that keeps Nigeria waiting on other countries for supplies and solutions, especially in tackling challenges like the Covid-19 pandemic.
What President Buhari is saying
Buhari said the agency should play a more pivotal role in equipping the country during emergencies, while encouraging research, upgrading local skills, fabrication and international collaborations that would provoke growth in science and technology.
The President said, “The uniqueness of the mandate of NASENI as enshrined in its enabling law towards the actualisation and realisation of our development programmes such as the creation of Ten Million jobs; Economic Recovery and Growth Programme (ERGP) and Post COVID-19 sustainability Plan.
“It is only deliberate deployment of Engineering, Science, Technology and Innovation (ESTI) using technology domestication and reverse engineering of capital goods.
“Making them available in Nigeria that can fast-track the realisation of our collective will to build capacity and reduce poverty among our teeming populace. The countries that are at the forefront of economic recovery have only one thing in common: investment and sustained research and development work in knowledge economy.
“Covid-19 pandemic has exposed the Technology and innovation gap between us and the developed World, which NASENI is strategically positioned to fill.’’
Going further, the President said in order to achieve its full potential, NASENI must be empowered through the provision of adequate financial, human and material resources and be given the autonomy and independence to engage in international partnerships to acquire the relevant technologies for socio-economic and industrial advancement of the country.
He said, ‘’In this regard, I have directed the Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning and Federal Inland Revenue Service to commence remittance of funds approved by Law of the Agency.’’
‘’It is important to for members of the NASENI Governing Board to note that Agencies of Governments with a similar mandate as NASENI in many countries are directly under the supervision of their respective Heads of State and Government.’’
While making his own remark, the Executive Vice Chairman of NASENI, Prof. Mohammed Haruna, revealed that the agency had constructed electronic voting systems and was already working on locally produced jet engines and assemblage of passenger and military helicopters.
What you should know
- It can be recalled that President Buhari had earlier approved the reconstitution and inauguration of the Governing Board of NASENI on March 8, 2018, with a clear mandate to develop local capacity in machine building and fabrication, which would be critical to Nigeria’s industrial development.
- NASENI was established in 1992 by the Federal Government following the recommendations of the White Paper Committee on the 1991 Report of a 150-member National Committee on Engineering Infrastructure comprising scientists, engineers, administrators, federal and state civil servants, economists, lawyers, bankers and industrialists.
Nigeria signs pact with Morocco’s OCP Group to aid fertilizer production
The pact is expected to utilize Nigerian gas and Moroccan phosphate to produce 750,000 tons of ammonia and one million tons of phosphate fertilizers.
Nigeria has signed a pact with OCP Africa to aid the second phase of the Nigerian Presidential Fertilizer Initiative in Morocco. The pact was signed by the Nigerian delegation led by the Minister of State for Petroleum, Timipre Sylva and officials of Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA).
This was disclosed in a statement issued by NSIA and seen by Nairametrics on Tuesday.
This is expected to utilize Nigerian gas and Moroccan phosphate to produce 750,000 tons of ammonia and one million tons of phosphate fertilizers annually by 2025.
We joined HMSPR Timipre Sylva, OCP Morocco, PFI and the NSIA in Marrakech to endorse protocols that progresses the Amonia plant establishment in Akwa Ibom. We gave gas supply assurances and NNPC will take equity in the venture. Local fertilizer production will get boost! pic.twitter.com/krmwzQ7lji
— Mele Kyari (@MKKyari) March 2, 2021
To achieve the 750,000 tons target, a number of agreements were signed between OCP Africa, the Fertilizer Producers and Suppliers Association of Nigeria, and the NSIA in order to commit to the second phase of the Nigerian Presidential Fertilizer Initiative.
Similarly, a Shareholders’ Agreement was also signed between OCP Africa and the NSIA for the creation of the Joint Venture Company. This agreement would oversee the development of a versatile industrial platform that will produce ammonia and fertilizers in Nigeria.
It stated, “a Memorandum of Understanding between OCP Africa, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, and NSIA was sealed. The objective of this pact is to evaluate the opportunity of an equity investment by the NNPC in the JVC and for its support on gas.”
What you should know
- The business visit is a follow up to the industrial project which was officially launched in June 2018 following the success of the first phase of the Presidential Fertilizer Initiative supported by OCP.
- Through these agreements, the OCP Group has confirmed its commitment to the development of sustainable and inclusive agriculture in Nigeria.
- The project was first announced during the official visit to Morocco of President Muhammadu Buhari and it is aimed at developing a versatile industrial platform in Nigeria.
- Recall that in 2016, OCP Group first partnered with the Fertilizer Producers and Suppliers Association of Nigeria under the Presidential Fertilizer Initiative, supported by the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority.
- This collaboration stretched across the entire agricultural value chain, from the introduction of customized fertilizers adapted to local soils and crops to improving the availability of fertilizers in the local market at competitive prices.
- The partnership also included farmer support initiatives, supply chain development projects along with the strengthening of a close distribution system.
- These joint efforts have led to the renovation of 13 blending units and packaging for fertilizers and installation by private operators of more than 14 new factories.
FG declares ‘no-fly zone’ in Zamfara, bans mining activities in the State
The imposition and enforcement of a ban on all mining activities in Zamfara with immediate effect is until further notice.
President Muhammadu Buhari has banned mining activities in Zamfara State, as it declared a ‘no-fly zone’ in the northern state.
This was disclosed by the National Security Adviser (NSO), retired Maj. Gen. Babagana Monguno, during the State House briefing at the end of the meeting of the National Security Council on Tuesday.
At the meeting, which was presided by President Buhari, he said;
“The President has approved, based on our recommendations, the imposition and enforcement of a ban on all mining activities in Zamfara with immediate effect until further notice.
“He has directed the Minister of Defence and the National Security Adviser to deploy massive military and intelligence assets to restore normalcy to that part of the country.
“He has also approved that Zamfara State should be declared ‘a no fly zone’ with immediate effect.”
— Government of Nigeria (@NigeriaGov) March 2, 2021
President Buhari said, “I join the affected families and the people of Zamfara State in welcoming and celebrating the release of the abducted students of GGSS Jangebe. This news bring overwhelming joy. I am pleased that their ordeal has come to a happy end without any incident.
I join the affected families and the people of Zamfara State in welcoming and celebrating the release of the abducted students of GGSS Jangebe. This news bring overwhelming joy. I am pleased that their ordeal has come to a happy end without any incident.
— Muhammadu Buhari (@MBuhari) March 2, 2021
“We are working hard to bring an end to these grim and heartbreaking incidents of kidnapping. The Military and the Police will continue to go after kidnappers. They need the support of local communities in terms of human intelligence that can help nip criminal plans in the bud.”
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