The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, FMSTI, Mr James Sule has emphasised the need to promote the culture of science, technology and Innovation for the expansion of the Nigerian economy.
He made this statement during the opening ceremony of the maiden edition of the NASRDA HACKATHON AND TECH FAIR 2023 with the theme: space Innovation for industry 4.0 held at the Agency's headquarters in Abuja.
Mr Sule who welcomed participants to the week long programme described the event as a remarkable adventure which will encompass the fusion of outstanding minds, original concepts and advanced technology.
According to him, the Hackathon and Tech fair will offer participants and exhibitors opportunity to display their skills, discuss innovative ideas and create collaborations that will promote technology and advance Nigeria towards a more economically viable nation.
He further stated that the potential benefits of creative solutions cannot be over emphasized irrespective of whether they are aimed at guaranteeing cyber security in our digital infrastructure, implementing nanotechnology for sustainable development, deploying robotics to increase productivity or investigating disruptive space applications for better communication and remote sensing.
The Permanent Secretary who commended the dedication and enthusiasm of the organizers and participants describing it as a demonstration of their commitment towards harnessing innovation and technology to address pressing global issues.
Speaking earlier in his welcome address, the Director General of the National Space Research and Development Agency, NASRDA, Dr Halilu Ahmad Shaba said, NASRDA HACKATHON AND TECH FAIR 2023 represents the Federal Government's unwavering commitment towards advancing science, technology and innovation in the country.
According to him, the ministry has been a driving force behind the promotion and support of cutting-edge research and development in Nigeria hence, and thus underscores government's recognition of the critical role that space science and technology play in shaping the country's future.
He stressed that the gathering was not only to witness convergence of brilliant minds, cutting-edge technologies and innovative ideas, but to also foster collaboration, inspire creativity and explore ground breaking solutions to Nigeria’ challenges.
The NASRDA boss said, the event will provide an invaluable platform for participants and exhibitors to showcase their expertise, exchange knowledge, and forge partnerships that will drive technological advancements and propel Nigeria towards a more prosperous and sustainable future.
Dr Shaba who appreciated the Permanent Secretary and other guests at the event, described their support and encouragement as a testament to the importance of science, technology and innovation in driving national development that will push the boundaries of knowledge, explore new frontiers and create a better future for Nigerians.
In his presentation, the keynote speaker, Engineer Professor Azikiwe Onwualu who spoke on the topic: Bringing innovation ideas to life said, there is a nexus between ideas, commercialization and the wealth of nations.
According to him, despite the abundance of both human and natural resources, the development pace of the country is slow mainly because of the inability of the system to adopt science, technology and innovation in all it's developmental stages.
He identified the need for a functional national system of innovation based on the triple Helix model which according to him will ensure sustainable commercialization of ideas, Innovations, prototypes, Research and Development results.
He further stated that one of the ways through which the country can achieve a meaningful developmental pace is by establishing a National innovation hub which will serve as a platform for the incubation and development of all innovative activities.
In his opening remarks, the chairman Organization Committee, of NASRDA HACKATHON and TECH FAIR 2023, Dr Haruna Mohammed described the event as a birth of a new developmental era because of it's immense significance in our evolving world.
He said the focus of the event will cover the areas of Artificial intelligence, cyber security, nanotechnology, robotics and disruptive space applications.
Dr Mohammed who thanked the NASRDA boss for his support said, the ideas generated in the event will have the power to revolutionize industries, drive economic growth and improve the quality of life for all.
The chairman who is also the Director of NASRDA'S Center for Space Innovation and Development, CSID, further stated that the aim of the program is to foster an environment where participants can network, learn from experts, and exchange ideas with their respective peers on relevant strategies geared towards actualizing their respective intentions.
He also encouraged participants to show a very high sense of responsibility by displaying professionalism so that the aim of the programme will be optimally realised for the advancement of the country.
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