Gov. Diri Tasks Agencies On Varsity Research Funding​

The Visitor to University of Africa Toru-Orua and Executive Governor of Bayelsa State wants agencies in the country to commit more funds to support research in Nigerian tertiary institutions.

He said the Tertiary Education Tax Fund (TETFUND) and others, including Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), needed to do more in research funding.

Governor Douye Diri made the call at the Second Public Lecture of the University of Africa Toru-Orua (UAT) organised by the Faculty of Basic and Applied Sciences on Thursday, June 30, 2022.

Represented by the Deputy Governor, Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, the Governor underscored research as capable of providing solutions to developmental challenges and charged the University of Africa, Toru-Orua to tap into research funds at the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board.

On claims of proliferation of universities by the state government in some quarters, Governor Douye Diri insisted that Bayelsa deserves more higher institutions of learning as quality cognitive education remains a veritable tool against retrogressive tendencies and stimulates development in every society; while explaining that Bayelsa was a far cry from Ogun, which has about twelve tertiary varsities.

The Bayelsa Governor applauded his predecessor for establishing the University of Africa to deepen the frontiers of quality education in Bayelsa and build a globally competitive manpower, while launching the UAT Research Endowment Fund with an undisclosed amount.

In his lecture titled, “Utilizing Untapped Research Funding Opportunities: An Imperative for Innovative Research in University Systems”, the Guest Speaker, Ambassador Godknows Igali, noted that research is pivotal to every knowledge in all fields and advocated a paradigm shift in research funding in Nigerian universities.

Ambassador Igali called on universities to explore options such as educational endowments, alumni associations, partnerships and linkages to fund research in the face of uncertainty in government funding.

Earlier, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Africa Toru Orua (UAT), Prof. Kingston Nyamapfene, had lauded the Faculty of Basic and Applied Sciences for organizing the public lecture and enjoined government and other stakeholders to do more in research funding to bridge knowledge gaps.

Some highpoints of the event were public exhibition of research products by lecturers and students and a performance by the UAT Arts troupe.

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