IP: Nurturing Creativity, Innovation Culture In Youths — Leadership Newspaper

IP: Nurturing Creativity, Innovation Culture In Youths

Nigeria recently joined the rest of the world to commemorate the African Day for Technology and Intellectual Property. The event saw the Ministry of Science and Technology through the National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP) inviting over 20 secondary and vocational schools in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, to engage one another in exhibitions and competition. The event themed ‘Promoting science, technology and innovation (STI) culture and education in Nigeria’ saw the invited schools present various inventions and innovations that were assessed by experts in technology and intellectual property. The event saw Government Science Secondary School, Garki, Government Day Secondary School, Karu and Vocational Educational Institute, Gwagwalada take up the first, second and third positions respectively in the young scientists’ research and innovation competition among selected schools with the winners clinching a cash reward ofN200, 000, N150, 000 and N100, 000 respectively. The commemoration of African day was to arouse the latent creativity and inventive spirit of young inventors and innovators being one of the ways through which rapid development of a nation can be assured. The resolution was to further sensitize and facilitate the domestication of technology and development of the Intellectual Property Right (IPR) system in Africa and reawaken the creative ability of the people in the continent to eradicate poverty and drive sustainable development.

Speaking at the event, the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu said technology and IPR had taken a global dimension in determining the position of a nation in designing and participating in the construction of international power equation and determining regions of investment by multinational corporations. The commemoration, according to him, demonstrates the great importance which the African nations place on science, technology and innovation as an engine that drives development. “With the increasing importance of knowledge as the main engine of growth in the 21st century, the decision of African leaders to declare a day for the commemoration of the role of technology and intellectual property in achieving sustainable development in African continent is a positive stride,” he said. He stressed that in today’s knowledge-based economy and global business environment, absorption of new technology has become a veritable component for companies to survive through maintaining their competitive positions in the market place, adding for a nation state, technology is used as a tool to enhance national competitiveness as nations are no longer valued in terms of their population, geographical landmass or mineral resources but on the organic mass of knowledge in its citizenry.
In the same vein, the ministry’s permanent secretary, Mr Bitrus Nabasu said no nation of the earth can develop without adequate deployment of science, technology and innovation.
He emphasized the need to deploy technology and IPR for development of the various sectors of the economy, adding Nigeria cannot go far without encouraging innovators and inventors to protect their intellectual works and make good use of them in the development of the economy. “Unless Nigeria develops the technical manpower to attract and domesticate foreign technology for our daily operations, it may be difficult for it to meet up with the challenges of unemployment, poverty, wealth creation and youth restiveness,” he stated, The permanent secretary said the ministry through agencies like NOTAP was working seriously in collaboration with other stakeholders to achieve results in this direction.

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