The Federal government has taken steps that will promote Leather Technology in the country and quicken industrialization process at a ceremony were 70 trainees matriculated at the North Central Geo-political Zones Regional Leather Centre, Utako, District, Abuja
The Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, further stated that the commissioning of the Leather training infrastructure will help to build the needed indigenous capacity that will enable the nation domesticate this vital technology.
According to the Minister, “this will also strengthen our capacity to convert our rich agricultural products into viable economic goods and services that we need for both domestic consumption as well as to strengthen export earnings. This will help in job and wealth creation, help to restore national self- reliance and self-confidence, enhance prosperity and boost our economy”.
The Minister disclosed that the process of creating additional Leather Research and Development Center in other geopolitical zones of the country where none currently exits has reach advanced stage. “It is expected that this would help strengthen greater grassroots participation in leather technology, thereby helping to stimulate more indigenous capacity for the ultimate benefits of our people”.
Earlier, the Director-General of the Nigerian Institute of Leather Technology (NILEST), Dr. Eucharia Oparah said that the training is intended to address the short comings that are always encountered in the production process and hoped that the experience garnered at the training would be sustained.
According to the NILEST Chief Executive, “In a recessed economy such as the country is facing, there is no doubt that the d involvement of organized scientific and technological approaches would provide the much-needed palliatives”
At the occasion, the Honourable Minister of Federal Capital Territory FCT Musa Bello Mohammed who was represented by the director Abuja Enterprise Agency, Mallam Tukur Arabi noted that “for Nigeria to achieve sustainable development through Science , Technology and Innovation (STI), it is imperative that we foster greater collaboration across the sector”.
The Minister stressed that “Leather’ is the second highest revenue source after oil, thus the need to diversify into Leather value chain (LVC)”.
The Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Science and Technology Belema Wakama who was represented by Stella Igwilo commended the Federal Capital Territory through one of its Agencies FCT Agency for Science and Technology (FAST) for sponsoring the training exercise aimed at developing youths to improve their standard of living and for self-reliance.
The formal inauguration of the Nigerian Institute of Science and Leather Technology (NILEST) North Central Regional Leather Research and Development Cluster Extension Center and Commissioning of Leather Training infrastructure was jointly organized by FMST through NILEST and FCT Agency for Science and Technology.
In a related development, the Minister of Science and Technology Dr. Ogbomaya Onu has said that Nigeria will continue to strengthen her cooperation with Islamic Republic of Iran and other countries in areas of research and innovations for national development.
The Minister stated this when the Ambassador of the Islamic, Republic of Iran, Mr. Morteza Rahimi Zarchi paid a courtesy call on him in his office today.
Edet E. Etuk
Asst Chief Information Officer
For DD (Press)
13rd July. 2017