Nigeria’s Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu has called on Nigerians to be self-reliant.
Speaking at the Public presentation and the launch of the book titled “INSIDE TOMATO”: The Role of Science, Technology and Innovation for Sustainable Tomato Production in Nigeria, Dr. Onu said the nation’s Gross Domestic Product could grow higher with proper application of Science, Technology and Innovation.
According to Dr. Onu, the content of the book “INSIDE TOMATO” is a guide for budding entrepreneurs so as to boost the nation’s economy.
The Minister purchased 100 copies to be distributed to schools and Non-governmental organisations, to inspire younger generations.
Earlier, the book reviewer, Mr. Femi Adesina, Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, quoted the author as saying tomato is a lucrative crop to invest in as it guarantees double return on investment in less than 9 months.
He advocated that tomato production should be included in the agricultural revolution currently sweeping the country and added that the nation has achieved almost 100% self-reliance in food production.
Mr. Adesina said that the book will promote the production of tomato production and improve investment in tomatoes and other agricultural sector in the country.
He highlighted the role of tomato production and its contribution to the economic fortunes of the country.
The Chief launcher of the book, Senator Tanko Al-Makura, said the nation should divert power and wealth to the grassroots, so as to reduce the wealth gap and inequality in the country.
The launching of the book, he added, was in line with the current administration’s desire to diversify the nation’s economy from a mono-economy to one that is reliant on agriculture and other sectors of the economy.
Senator Al-Makura added that Tomato production, could serve as value-chain for achieving the economic diversification policy of the Federal Government, therefore called on all citizens to contribute their quota towards achieving the economic diversification effort.
In his remarks, the keynote speaker Professor Suleiman Bala Muhammed, Vice-Chancellor Nassarawa State University, said Science, Technology and Innovation is experiencing a new lease of life in Nigeria today, and would be critical in the development fortunes of the country.