From Tony Osauzo, Benin
Acting Rector, Auchi Polytechnic, Mustapha Zubair, has said Nigeria will not get out of its economic mess until it goes into mass production of goods and services.
He stated this, yesterday, while fielding questions from newsmen in Benin City, the Edo State capital.
“All we do now is buying and selling, you wait for somebody to produce and send to us, how do you develop? It is only when you are into production that you will determine what you want by fixing prices and other factors. But something you do not have control of, they will have to dictate to you. Some of us were spurred to read engineering going by what we experienced in the late 70s and early 80s when you look at our manufacturing sector, but today, everything is dead.
“So, except we revive that and we see ourselves going into production and manufacturing by encouraging science and technology, I am sorry, if it is this buying and selling, we are getting nowhere. I doubt if our economy will grow this way. We have to invest in science and technology and encourage our younger ones to partake in it. Let them graduate and provide work for themselves.”
Lamenting the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the nation’s economy, especially in the education sector, Zubair disclosed that Auchi Polytechnic had to look inward to cushion the impact of the pandemic.
“We set up an engineering-based committee saddled with the responsibility of researching areas that will help cushion the effect of COVID-19. It was the committee, which I chaired, that came up with the fabricated hand-washing machine, dispensing booth aimed at combating the COVID-19 issue. We also produced sanitisers and branded face masks.”
He attributed the success recorded in these projects to the support from Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND) which he said has aided a number of staff to go into research.