By Anayo Ezugwu
THE Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has presented research grants to 11 universities in the country. Professor Umar Danbatta, executive vice chairman of the NCC, said the quality of life in a society is determined by the quality of research.
Speaking at the presentation of award letters to the academics with successful proposals for the NCC 2018 Research Grants, Danbatta said as someone, who is located at the intersection of telecom engineering scholarship and telecommunication industry, he was gratified by the increasing collaboration and partnership between the academia and telecommunication industry in Nigeria.
The recipients of the grants, which will be administered by their respective universities, are: Prof. Rabiu Magaji, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria; Prof. Ejikechukwu Anene, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University; Prof. Ifeanyichukwu Ezenma, University of Nigeria Nsukka; Prof. Mohammed Abdulrazaq, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria and Prof. Oladapo Fakolejo, University of Ibadan.
Others are Abiodun Gbenga-Ilori, University of Lagos; Stella Orakwe, University of Port Harcourt; A.O. Adetunmbi, Federal University of Technology Akure; Nuhu Shuaibu, University of Jos; Adeyinka Adedigba, Federal University of Technology Minna and Suleiman Babani, Bayero University Kano.
Danbatta noted that the academia provide knowledge resource and research results that govern transformational growth and facilitate innovations in industries worldwide. “Collectively, the academia impart the youth and the general populace with the resources of knowledge required to qualitatively transform their lives through ground-breaking ideas that will revolutionize and reshape the world,” he said.
The NCC boss said the initiative fits into the communications mandate. He noted that the academia’s role in this instance is well in line with the globally-recognised of community service, which is the hallmark of educational institutional culture.
He reminded the recipients and their respective universities about the terms and conditions of the grant and appealed to them to abide by them. “You are not under any circumstance expected to showcase the work or the prototype to anybody or organisation or at any exhibition, until the commission has received the final prototype and sign off in it,” adding that he is enthusiastic that the prototype that will evolve from this collaboration will be of benefits to the Nigerian telecommunication industry.
In his remarks at the occasion, Professor Bashir Muazu, the chairman of the Inter-Agency Committee that assessed the proposals, said the NCC has thrown a challenge to the academic community in Nigeria. He recalled that 63 proposals were received, but only 11 met all the criteria set out to evaluate the submissions.
He called on the recipients to abide by the rules of engagement and commended the NCC for non-interference with the processes of the committee and for approving the committee’s recommendations.
Professor Musa Aibinu of the Federal University of Technology Minna, who spoke on behalf of the recipient institutions, commended the NCC for promoting knowledge and knowledge economy. He said the recipients and the Nigerian academic community are encouraged by the NCC vision and promised that they will keep the rules, deliver within stipulated time and deliver what will be beneficial to Nigeria and the global community.
Ephraim Nwokonneya, director of research and development, NCC, recalled the journey of the NCC Research Grant Project and other similar initiatives of the commission, noting that just a fortnight ago, some members of the Nigerian academic community gathered at the same venue to witness the endowment of two professorial chairs in Nigerian universities.
He said the dynamism of the telecom industry explains NCC’s consistent search for cutting edge solutions oriented in local content.
He expressed joy that the outcome of some of NCC research grants are undergoing the process of testing and patenting with the National Office for Technological Acquisition and Promotion, NOTAP, and are indeed encouraged by these results and that has inspired the commission to continue to facilitate further researches.
This initiative started with two recipients. In 2017 there were six winners. With 11 awardees for 2018, there has been 83 percent increase in the number of beneficiaries in one year and the monetary value of the grants has also increased. Just recently, NCC published advertisements requesting for proposals for the 2019 NCC Research Grants.
– June 14, 2019 @ 15:59 GMT |