Kwara State Governor, Dr Abdulfatah Ahmed has charged chemists to play active roles in solving Nigeria’s challenges in the areas of healthcare, pharmaceuticals, manufacturing and agribusiness.
Gov. Ahmed gave the charge as a recipient of the 2016 Award of the America Chemical Society and Nigeria International Chemical Societies Chapter.
Dr Ahmed, who is a graduate of chemistry, noted that the prevailing economic challenges in the country and the quest for the diversification of the economy provide ample opportunities for chemists to play critical role’s in that regard.
“At a time like this, when the country is diversifying its economic base, it is expedient that chemists increase research into areas such as agro-processing, and solid Minerals Development in order to unlock the potentials in those sectors and improve their contributions to the country’s economy”, he said.
The governor added that given the critical roles of chemistry and other sciences in industrial growth, science education should be made compulsory in Secondary and Tertiary institutions to enhance reasoning skills.
“I would like to recommend the inclusion of science education as compulsory in secondary and tertiary institutions so as to enhance reasoning skills and increase the number of students choosing a career in the sciences”, the governor suggested.
According to the governor, in today’s knowledge economy, chemistry and indeed the sciences as a whole, have critical roles to play in “industrialization and ICT which remain the fulcrum in which current and future development rests”.
Gov Ahmed solicited greater synergy between the academia and government so that each can leverage on areas of competence and influence for the benefit of the society.
The Vice-Chancellor, University of Ilorin, Prof. AbdulGaniy Ambali in his remarks charged chemists to ensure that serious attention is paid to effects of chemical pollution in the country.
Prof. Ambali, represented by Deputy Vice Chancellor, Academics, of the institution, Prof. (Mrs) Sidikat Ijaya, said the huge volume of used vehicles imported into the country constituted environmental hazard that should be checked.
The Chairman of Annual Chemistry Scientists/Nigeria International Chemical Sciences Chapter, Prof. Joshua Ayoola Obaleye said Governor Ahmed was selected for the 2016 ACS-NICSC Award because of his contributions to the society.
Kwara State Governor, Dr. Abdulfatah Ahmed (right) being presented an Award of Distinguished Recipient of 2016 American Chemical Society by Vice Chairman, Fight Against Desert Encroachment (FADE), Ambassador Ayo Olukanmi (left) and Deputy Vice Chancellor, (Academic) University of Ilorin, Prof. Sidiqat Ijaiya at the University of Ilorin.