NCC, Academia, Stakeholders to develop quality, employable graduates

Na’ankwat Dariem

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The Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) is to collaborate with the Academia and industry stakeholders to develop a policy that will produce ready made graduates for the industry.

They hope to find a meeting point between the quality of graduates and what the industry is willing to employ which will in turn provide jobs stimulate growth and opportunities in the telecommunications sector.

The Executive Vice Chairman (EVC), NCC Prof. Umar Dambatta, represented by the Director New Media and Information Security, NCC Mr. Haru Alhassan, stated this in Abuja, Nigeria, this Abuja during 3rd Annual Stakeholder Forum with the Academia and Industry “Stakeholder Collaboration in Research and Development: Key Drivers for Innovation in the Telecoms Sector”.

Danbatta explained:”With you, our key Stakeholders, we can together identify and succinctly articulate the pressing needs of the industry, unlock the inherent potential of knowledge that exists in our Academia and agree on public policies needed so that our dreams of indigenously created technology innovations/solutions will become a reality.

We intend to offer Research Fellowship positions for in-depth research and exploration of problems the Industry is facing whilst improving the Researchers’ experience of the industry,” he said.

The EVC noted that  “We have also formed a National Steering Committee made up of the National Universities Commission (NUC), the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE), the Academia, and the Industry to develop a roadmap that would ensure academic researches address local industry needs and tertiary institutions produce “industry-ready” graduates.” Prof Danbatta added.

The Executive Commissioner (Technical Services), NCC Mr. Ubale Maska, presented by the  Director, Research and Development, NCC, Mr. Ephraim Nwokenaya, stated: “However in today’s Knowledge economy otherwise referred to as the 4th Industrial revolution, the stakeholder matrix has broaden to include the Academia, responsible for knowledge generation, knowledge application and knowledge dissemination which are key variables for addressing current realities and complexities of the modern society.”

“Our gathering here today therefore signifies an acknowledgement of the critical position of the academia in the current knowledge economy and underscores a shared passion for research and innovation in the telecoms sector,” he explained.

Mr. Ephraim Nwokenaya, while responding to questions from Journalists  said, “We believe that research is at the core of innovation, what we are doing is to stimulate Nigerians to innovative thinking in their approach. In the current world of digital technology. There is a lot you can achieve by way of innovation in a knowledge society we are today, which rides on the triple hernous: government, industry and the academia.

Our approach is that research result from the academia should be the ones that will change lives and society. Those are the results that we can commercialise and not the ones that will end up on the shelves.

Deputy Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission  ,Dr. Suleiman Yusuf, emphasized the need for  continues collaboration between the industry and the academia in developing the telecoms sector.

The academia as you know is the hub of any economy, so it is our anticipation that when the academia interfaces the industry and we reach common understanding of what the challenges are, why are we not able to achieve what we set out to achieve as private concerns, what steps do we need to take to improve innovations, quality of product and so on.

According to Him: “This is a knowledge driven economy and it is important we harness our resources in the academia, focus our energies on innovative ideas that will lead to products and services that will affect the ordinary man in the country and ultimately impact on the socio-economic development of Nigeria,” he concluded.

Vice Chancellor, Federal University of Petroleum (FUPRE) Effurun, Prof. Akhi Ibahdode, who was represented by Dr. Godwin Ugwu, Director, ICT, FUPRE advised the government to develop a policy that will make it mandatory for any foreign company in Nigeria to have Nigerian engineers that will understudy them before getting a contract.

Omolayo.A