Bayelsa State Governor, Douye Diri, has said that his administration’s focus on development of skills acquisition through establishment of colleges of science and technical education in every local council of the state is to address unemployment in the light of an increasingly digitalised global economy.
The governor stated this at the Local Content Tower in Yenagoa on Tuesday during the grand finale of the Nigerian Content Science and Technology Innovation Challenge.
A statement, the Chief Press Secretary, Daniel Alabrah, quoted his principal as noting that the state government had adopted an educational curriculum that shifted emphasis from certificate education to science and technology-based skills, as no society could develop beyond its level of education.
He called for collaboration with the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board and other stakeholders to ensure that science and technology were prioritised in the education sector.
Commending the NCDMB management and its partners for introducing the challenge to build the capacity of young Nigerians in science and technology, the CPS noted that the programme was in line with the board’s mandate to bridge the technology and manpower needs in the oil and gas industry.
His words, “The current management of the board has not left anyone in doubt as to its commitment in fulfilling its mandate of producing a new set of engineers, scientists and technologists to fill the local content demand of our country.
“We are aware that, progressively, Nigerians are getting more involved in the production of oil and gas. To my mind, this innovation challenge is to inspire young scientists to achieve greater things.”
According to the governor, science and technology provided a huge buffer for societal growth, and Nigeria must take deliberate steps in ensuring technological advancement in all spheres of life.
In his address, the NCDMB Executive Secretary, Simbi Wabote, said the Nigerian Content Science, Technology and Innovation Challenge was one of its various interventions for the industrialisation of the Nigerian oil and gas industry and its linkage sectors.
Wabote explained that the STIC, in partnership with Enactus Nigeria Limited, was at the grand finale stage with over 170 public and private universities in Nigeria participating.
The Country Director, Enactus Nigeria, Michael Ajayi, described the challenge as a unique opportunity to create entrepreneurs while reducing the unemployment rate and supporting the economic advancement of the country.
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