By Mohammed Mohammed
The Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation (FMSTI), Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu has pledged that Federal Government will focus on use of Nigerian expertise and not foreign expatriates in projects execution and infrastructural development of the country.
At a meeting with members of the Association of Consultant Engineers of Nigeria (ACEN), in his office in Abuja, the Minister averred that effective synergy between ACEN and federal government will fast-track infrastructure development of the country for easy passage of goods and services across the country.
On Executive Order 5, he underscored that one of the reasons why the Order was initiated by the President Muhammadu Buhari Administration was to make sure that all Nigerian professionals will not depend on expatriates rather be expatriates themselves in executing projects and contracts.
According to him, the essence of Executive Order 05 is to use our own professionals as our own expatriates in all infrastructural engagements in the country.
He recalled that for the past 5 years, Nigeria has been leading a very silent revolution now depending less on commodities which adversely affected our economy, explaining that the vulnerability and fluctuations in global market prices of commodities makes it difficult for us (Nigeria) to control.
The Minister said that when Nigeria had her independence, other countries were depending on us. But gradually, those countries have left us to be knowledge dependent economy.
He said the ministry has been championing the course to ensure that the economy is dependent on knowledge that is innovation driven and with the support of other ministries we are making progress and the economy is now diversified.
He assured them that FMSTI will support them so as to show the world that Nigeria is aiming to be number one ready to overtake other countries that have left us behind.
Earlier, Engr. Charles Abayomi, who spoke on behalf of the Association president, said that the essence of their visit was to seek active collaboration and partnership with the ministry on their key mandates.
He also used the opportunity to invite the Minister to be a key speaker at their forthcoming conference later in the year.