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    How Nigeria can become knowledge-based economy, by Professor Fasina

    Foluso Ogunmodede (PRO)

    Vice-Chancellor Federal University Oye Ekiti (FUOYE), Ekiti State, Nigeria, Professor Abayomi Sunday Fasina has offered tips on how Nigeria would become most-sought after as a knowledge-based economy.

    According to him, Nigeria was capable of becoming Africa foodbasket should “our diverse resources both in human and nature” were properly explored, insisting that the country would only attain desired economic prosperity if “avalanche of human and natural resources which give us a pride of place in the comity of nations” were adequately marshalled with a view to ensuring “economic prosperity we all seek.”

    Professor Abayomi Sunday Fasina said this at the 2nd International Conference of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Federal University Oye Ekiti held on Oye Campus.

    While declaring the International Conference open, Professor Fasina described the gathering of experts and the Conference theme—“Nigeria’s Diversity for Prosperity and Sustainable Development” as “very apt” and well-timed.”

    Although he was hopeful that the gathering would produce desired results as panacea for Nigeria’s myriads of economic problems, Professor Fasina lamented that despite endowed “avalanche of natural resources” the country still wallowed in penury.

    He, however, believed that the conference would yield desired results as its outcome become panacea that would lift Nigeria out of socio-economic and political quagmire.

    Professor Fasina said: “As a member of the academia, conferences and meetings like this are of utmost importance to boosting and entrenching our research prowess vis-à-vis dissemination of our research outputs, robust critiques and engagements and cross-fertilization of ideas, thereby enhancing academic productivity. I am enthusiastically optimistic that this meeting would yield the desired results.

    “As an administration, we shall keep supporting endeavours like this, so as to put our darling university on global reckoning as we are leaving no stone unturned in our frantic efforts to pursuing our desires for excellence and innovation and with GOD on our side, we shall keep winning.

    “On the theme of the conference, “Nigeria’s Diversity for Prosperity and Sustainable Development,” it is very apt to say that this theme very apropos and well-timed at a time like this in the annals of our nationhood. It is necessary to say that our dear country is blessed with avalanche of human and natural resources which give us a pride of place in the comity of nations.

    “However, the possession of these resources is not enough to take us out of the economic doldrums we have found ourselves. There is the need to harness and explore our diverse resources both in human and nature to ensuring the economic prosperity we all seek.

    “Economic prosperity would yield optimal development when it is sustainable. Sustainable development is the ability of the present generation to reach their full potential without jeopardizing the ability of coming generations to realizing theirs since life itself is a continuum.

    “I wish to state without any modicum of equivocation that lushness of our vegetation cum our large water bodies, could when leverage upon make us the food basket of Africa and earn us favourable foreign exchange thus opening new vistas of economic opportunities to the globe.

    “Other than this, our human resources and exploits in various fields of science, humanities and other endeavours could place us at a vantage position of being the most sought after knowledge-based economy in the world, thus handing down the banner of excellence and creativity to the coming generations.

    “Further to this, our large and youthful population should be seen as a blessing rather than a disadvantage. This is because when tapped into could yield demographic dividend in terms of cheap labour and ready market, thereby engendering productivity which would in turn leads to economic prosperity.

    “In achieving the earlier mentioned, there is the need to harness the prospects of our diversity, identify the opportunities therein and provide a veritable ways forward to mitigating the challenges that could hamper the steady course to the sustainable development of our dear nation through evidenced-based and rigorous empirical research leading to informed choices and policies from the academia on whom society relied on to savour from as the repository of knowledge.”

    Also, the Dean Faculty of Social Sciences, Professor Azeez Olaniyan, while acknowledging that Nigeria was at the crossroads especially as majority of Nigerians live in penury, canvassed the need to harness potential and dissect myriads of problems bedeviling Nigeria with a view to arriving at a workable and sustainable answers.

    He said: “Without any shred of exaggeration, our nation is at crossroads. A vast majority of her citizenry are living in penury in the face of abundant human and natural resources. At the moment, our nation is being enveloped by insecurity of various forms: banditry, insurgency, ritual killing, yahoo-yahoo, cultism, oil theft, vandalism, etc, all stemming largely from unemployed, underemployed, unemployable and unproductive youthful population.

    “In this suffocating environment, we the intellectuals cannot afford to keep quite. We must continue to engage and pontificate. Indeed, if we are to move from the quagmire that we find ourselves, the most cultivated minds cannot afford to stand aloof.

    “The quest for our country’s prosperity and sustainable development is a task that we must face frontally through continual interrogation, to dissect the problems so as to arrive at workable and sustainable answers.”

    Photo credit: Toluwanimi Bamigbola

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