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NCC Research Grants: University Recipients Vow To Deliver On Knowledge Economy

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*The grantees say the telecoms regulator has done well in promoting knowledge economy as they vow to deliver as expected

The ten (10) universities awarded Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) research grants have vowed to deliver on the Commission’s efforts in  promoting knowledge economy in Nigeria.

“NCC is doing well in promoting knowledge economy, we are encouraged, and we will deliver as expected”

Executive Vice Chairman and Chief Executive (EVC/CE) of NCC, Professor Umar Danbatta said while giving out the Research Grants to 10 universities that  the quality of life in a society is determined by the quality of research and as someone who is located at the intersection of telecom engineering scholarship and telecommunication industry, he was gratified by the increasing collaboration and partnership between the academia and telecommunication industry in Nigeria.

Professor Danbatta made the declaration this afternoon at the programme of the presentation of award letters to academics with successful proposals for the NCC 2018 Research Grants. The event held at the Conference Room of the NCC Head Office, Abuja. The recipients of the grants, which will be administered by their respective universities are:

1.      Prof. Rabiu Magaji, Ahmadu Bello University Zaria

2.      Prof. Ejikechukwu Anene, Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University

3.      Prof. Ifeanyichukwu Ezenma, University of Nigeria Nsukka

4.      Prof. Mohammed Abdulrazaq               , Ahmadu Bello University Zaria

5.      Prof. Oladapo Fakolejo, University of Ibadan

6.      Dr. Abiodun Gbenga-Ilori, University of Lagos

7.      Dr. Stella Orakwe, University of Port Harcourt

8.      Dr. A.O. Adetunmbi, Federal University of Technology Akure

9.      Dr. Nuhu Shuaibu, University of Jos

10.  Adeyinka Adedigba, Federal University of Technology Minna

11.  Suleiman Babani, Bayero University Kano

Grantees with NCC EVC Danbatta (middle)

Danbatta noted that the academia “provides knowledge resource and research results that govern transformational growth and facilitates innovations in industries worldwide”. Collectively, the academia imparts the youth and the general populace with the resources of knowledge required to qualitatively transform their lives through ground-breaking ideas that have revolutionize and reshape the world. Danbatta stated for emphasis and added that while the initiative by NCC fits into its mandate, the academia’s role in this instance is well in line with the globally-recognised of community service which is the hallmark of educational institutional culture.

He reminded the recipients and their respective universities about the terms and conditions of the grant and appealed to them to abide by them. Danbatta also cautioned: “you are not under any circumstance expected to showcase the work or the prototype to anybody or organisation or at any exhibition, until the Commission has received the final prototype and sign off in it”. The EVC is enthusiastic that the prototype that will evolve from this collaboration will be of benefits to the Nigerian telecommunication industry.

In his remarks at the occasion, Professor Bashir Muazu, the chairman of the Inter-Agency Committee that assessed the proposals, said the NCC has thrown a challenge to the academic community in Nigeria. He recalled that 63 proposals were received but only 11 met all the criteria set out to evaluate the submissions. He called on the recipients to abide by the rules of engagement and commended the NCC for non-interference with the processes of the Committee and for approving the Committee’s recommendations. Professor Musa Aibinu of the Federal University of Technology Minna, who responded on behalf of the recipient institutions commended the NCC for promoting knowledge and knowledge economy. He said the recipients and the Nigerian academic community are encouraged by the NCC vision and promised that they will keep the rules, deliver within stipulated time and deliver what will be beneficial to Nigeria and the global community.

Ephraim Nwokonneya, NCC Director of Research and Development, recalled the journey of the NCC Research Grant Project and other similar initiatives of the Commission noting that just a fortnight ago, some members of the Nigeria academic community gathered at the same venue to witness the endowment of two professorial chairs in Nigerian universities. He said the dynamism of the telecom industry explains NCC’s consistent search for cutting edge solutions oriented in local content and expressed joy that the outcome of some of NCC research grants “are undergoing the process of testing and patenting with National Office for Technological Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP), and we are indeed encouraged by these results and that has inspired us to continue to facilitate further researches.”

This initiative started with two recipients. In 2017 there were six (6) winners. With 11 awardees for 2018, there has been 83 percent increase in the number of beneficiaries in one year and the monetary value of the grants has also increased. Just yesterday, the NCC published advertisements requesting for proposals for the 2019 NCC Research Grants.

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