The Biotechnology Society of Nigeria (BSC), North West Zone, on Friday, said Nigeria has the human capacity acumen in the field of biotechnology to develop indigenous vaccines for COVID-19 and for other emerging infectious diseases.
The society said the tertiary and research institutions were not effectively harnessing the untapped potentials of the bulging youth and women population for biotechnological development which could help reduce restiveness and insurgency in the northern region.
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This was contained in a communique issued at the end of the maiden symposium of the Society held at the Kaduna State University, KASU, and signed by Dr Peter M Waziri, Chairman of Media Committee, BSN symposium, NorthWest Zone.
The Society said biotechnology development must focus on industrialisation, wealth creation and diversification of energy sources to include renewable energy options.
They said biotechnology innovations provide opportunities for enhancing economic growth and social prosperity through youth employment, entrepreneurship and value creation.
“That tertiary institutions from the North-West could benefit from the mainstreaming trans-disciplinary teaching and research to overcome the non-existing/weak collaboration and coordination among disciplines, universities, research institutions, industry and the public sector,” they said.
According to them, to harness the resource potential for productivity improvements in the country, urgent and significant investments was required in biotechnology education and research to build endogenous capacities for appropriate technology development, diffusion, deployment and regulation.
They said there was also the need for biotechnology to shift towards trans-disciplinary teaching and research approaches to encourage collaboration and networking across disciplines, universities, productive sector and civil society.