By Oluwatobi Opusunju
President, Muhammadu Buhari has reiterated the urgent need to deploy modern technologies in order for the country to navigate challenges undermining critical sectors like power and agriculture.
Critical infrastructure development such as power, telecommunications and transportation among others are still a major challenge in Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation of over 180 million people, making the country to still wallow in poverty.
For President Buhari, while speaking recently at the 27th Engineering Assembly of the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria, (COREN), there was need to upgrade the quality of engineering practice and concentrate on the application of modern technologies to improve the country’s infrastructure development. Once these can be done, there is hope for rapid economic growth, said the president who was represented by the Minister of Water Resources, Mr. Suleiman Adamu.
His words: “Our country is in dire need of new technologies to improve our infrastructure development. We need to upgrade the quality of engineering practice and concentrate on the application of modern engineering technology in road construction, power, manufacturing and housing among others.
“New engineering technologies are also needed to improve services in agriculture, transportation and power sectors, particularly to revamp our power generation, transmission and distribution, as well as our metering system.”
Buhari who was represented by the Minister of Water Resources, Mr. Suleiman Adamu reiterated that it was also important to update the curriculum across universities in the countryto reflect more modern teachings of technology.
The tech and engineering syllabus in our universities has often been aggressively criticized as a distinct gap between gown and town. Graduates are usually not in tune with the realities of the industry as a result of the obsolete curriculum.
According to Buhari, it was imperative for universities to turn out quality and world standard professionals in order to increase the competitiveness of our experts globally.
The 27th Engineering Assembly of the COREN had major stakeholders in attendance. The president tasked them to keep to the ethics of their profession even as he charged universities to upgrade their curriculum.
“The absence of up to date engineering and technology curriculum to reflect the current global trends in engineering and tech, has drastically reduced the competitiveness of our engineers.
“There is a deserving gap between professionals trained in Nigeria and those trained abroad. There is the need for our universities to turn out quality and world grade professionals,” said the president.