Onu calls for teaching of science, mathematics in indigenous languages
Posted by News Express | 13 December 2020 | 376 times
•Science and Technology Minister, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu
By CHARLES IWUOHA
The Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, has called for the teaching of science and mathematics in indigenous languages early in life to boost learning and understanding.
Onu made the call after he was conferred with Honorary Doctorate Degree in Science during the 5th Convocation ceremony of the Gregory University, Uturu, Abia State at the weekend.
``As we encourage the teaching of science, technology, engineering and mathematics in our schools, we should, at the early stages in our school system, use indigenous languages in teaching science and mathematics.
``This will help us produce Nobel laureates in physics, chemistry and medicine in the years to come.
``We must find indigenous ways of funding research and innovation in the country.
``This will help convert ideas into products and services, reduce importation of goods from abroad, increase exports to other countries, create jobs and wealth at home,’’ he said.
The minister also said that universities, research institutions, industry and the government must relate with one another, so as to encourage free flow of information for the good the nation.
Onu, who described young people as an inestimable treasure of the country, said that it was heartwarming that young Nigerians have dominated the world in sports, music, entertainment among others, adding: ``I am happy they are showing signs of dominance in technology’’.
``Through the incubation programme of the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, as many as 2,500 products developed from research findings are found in our markets.
``Many of the young people made this possible through start-ups. Start-ups in many cases have grown to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs),’’ he said.
He noted that over the world, the largest corporations are technology companies; adding: ``They are individuals whose assets acquired through science and technology is more than the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of many countries put together’’.
``The Federal Ministry of Science and Technology has put in place, the Executive Order Number 5 and the National Strategy for Competitiveness in Raw Materials and Product Development in Nigeria which give preference to Nigerian professionals and Nigerian firms in most of our economic activities.
``Hence, our young people should see the future with hope and great expectation. Working together, we will build the nation of our dream,’’ he added.
Earlier, the Chancellor and Proprietor of the university, Prof. Gregory Ibe, said that the institution had overcome some of its initial challenges encountered during its take-off eight years ago.
Ibe said: ``Our secret motivation has been the testimonies of our guardians and the employers of our graduates.
``I am always thrilled to note that these testimonies are never complete without the aspect that confirms the robust deployment of diverse entrepreneurial skills, creative talents and compelling spirit of industry by our graduates around the world as they champion societal development in the global world of work’’.
The chancellor described Onu as a unique and intellectually sound administrator and politician that had been a great blessing to Nigeria and humanity in general.
The acting Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof. Augustine Uwakwe, said that the institution currently had six colleges and it would be graduating 75 students in various disciplines within its colleges.
``We have taught, prepared and given them necessary tools and entrepreneurial skill to succeed in life and we are optimistic that they we do us proud and be good ambassadors of this great institution,’’ Uwakwe said.
The best graduating student, Miss Lucky Onyechere, thanked the institution’s management and lecturers for moulding the students’ future, adding: ``We will continue to be good ambassadors of this great institution’’.