Obasanjo calls on COMEG to create wealth for Nigeria

Feb 05, 2003 01:00 AM

President Olusegun Obasanjo has called on the Nigerian Mining Engineers and Geoscientists to use their professional expertises to create wealth for the country.
The President made the call in Abuja during the registration ceremony of the Council of Nigerian Mining Engineers and Geoscientists (COMEG), where he presented the instrument of registration to COMEG Chairman, Dr Ezekiel A. Ifaturoti.

Obasanjo, who was represented by the Minister of Science and Technology, Professor Turner T. Isoun, noted that the 21st Century economy was driven by knowledge and skill of science and technology. He stressed that acquiring a degree was no longer sufficient as applying such a degree for wealth creation to build solid economic foundation and growth for the country was paramount.
He also said that the time had come for the economy to be diversified from oil and gas, which he said, provided 90 % of the country's foreign earning. Obasanjo lamented that solid minerals contributed a meagre 0.4 % to a country so richly endowed with both mineral and human resources.

President Obasanjo, however, stated that his administration was desperate in ensuring that every sector of the economy made meaningful contributions to the Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
He told the professionals that their challenge is to reverse the independence of our industries on imported raw materials and machinery as the industrial sector is being looked upon to provide employment, reduce poverty and help reduce crime especially in urban areas in the future.

"I am particularly anxious to see the professionals in the minerals industries assert their skills and competence in the exploration, exploitation, development and utilization of our rich minerals endowments, which will result in the quality of life of the populace.”
“Time has come for our professionals to come out of their complacency to embark on innovative research and development (R&D) to solve our peculiar impelling problems. I therefore call on your Council to come up with concrete programmes of applied scientific work for the harnessing of our mineral wealth in favour of sustainable development as well as tangible socio-economic benefit for our people."

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