NASRDA decries lack of patronage of homegrown technology to fight maritime insecurity

NASRDA decries lack of patronage of homegrown technology to fight maritime insecurity

The National Space Research and Development Agency, NASRDA, has decried the lack of patronage of homegrown technology to fight maritime insecurity.

The agency said, on Thursday in Abuja that 90% of security challenges facing the maritime sector in Nigeria can be tackled by Geo-Stationary Satellite.

The declaration was made by the newly appointed Director General of the Space and Research Agency, Dr Olumide Mathew Adepoju during the screening exercise of his appointment by the Senate Committee on Innovation, Science and Technology.

Dr Adepoju at the screening, lamented non patronage of homegrown technology in the country by relevant authorities and Nigerians.

He told the committee chaired by Senator Aminu Iya Abbas, that the Geo-Stationary Satellite, if embraced by all stakeholders in the maritime sector, will fill in the gap for the needed Maritime Domain Awareness for all manner of planned crimes and the possibility of nipping them in the bud.

“For us at NASRDA, we are ready to collaborate and synergize with critical stakeholders in the maritime sector on the need to curb all manner of crimes in the sector.

“The most important device to use is the Geo-Stationary Satellite, which would help to give the required Maritime Domain Awareness for the various key players through synthetically factor reading.

“For effective use of the Geo – Stationary Satellite, cooperation and synergy are already being worked on between us and the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Nigerian Communication Satellite System, NigComSat, National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA”, he said.

He also decried that homegrown technologies put forward through innovations and inventions, are rarely patronized by relevant authorities and Nigerians.

“We have inbuilt capacity at NASRDA but the culture of not patronizing ourselves in Nigeria makes results from such capacities, uncelebrated.

“We can work together with the security agencies through our homegrown solution which is not patronized.

“Aside from that, the problem of acute shortage of office space for about 70 % of NASRDA staff, is also inhibiting them from giving their best because out of 5, 200 staff, less than 30% has office space “, he lamented.

In his remarks, the Chairman of the Committee, Senator Aminu Iya Abbas, told the nominee, that when confirmed by the Senate as substantive Director General of NASRDA, he should make the Space Center, a Centre of Excellence.

“Go for talent hunting because we have not seen much in the area of human development. Develop in-house capacity and pay attention to staff development.”