By Emmanuel Nduka
Experts across Africa, particularly from Nigeria and Morocco, have called for purposeful investments in Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) to drive and explore the vast potentials of the continent towards achieving sustainable economic growth.
While putting heads together on Monday July 26 at a webinar titled: “Morocco New Scientific and Economic Trends for an Inclusive African Continent”, the young industry players averred that for Africa to develop, it must invest in Research and Development to catch up with contemporary scientific and technological trends in various sectors.
Chairman/CEO of Mosilo Group and Nigerian Young Professionals Forum (NYPF) Mr Moses Siloko Siasia, called for a “multi-ethnic” collaboration of African countries in building the capacity of the young generation, whom he described as “trustees”.
He further hinted that the continent has capacity, but lacks strategic leadership.
“This information is very key even in boosting our economies. What we are doing in the NYPF with our Key Performance Indicator is raising young people to move with the trend and have foresight. We are raising leaders in NYPF and you know that one of Africa’s greatest need is leadership. We need leaders who do not just live in the moment, but also see the future,” he submitted.
Also speaking at the Webinar on the Role of USA in the development of Economy and Science in boosting Moroccan and African Economy, American CEO in Aeronautics, Mr Louis Winoski, harped on the need to create an environment “of excitement and attraction for our young people to come back home”.
He said time has come for Africa to create a template that works, adding that Africa can achieve whatever it wants without depending on sources from outside the continent.
“Engineering is a mind-set of understanding how things happen and why they happen. It is an outgrowing of science which continues to evolve.
“Aerospace began in 1957 in Morocco. By the early 2000s, European countries recognized Morocco as a potential hub. As we go forward in the next 10 years, we expect that this brings profits to Morocco, while the opportunities and investments remain here,” he added.
Similarly, Ms Hasnaa Chennaoui, President of ATTARIK Foundation, noted that it has remained difficult to harness technology in Africa, especially in the face of limited funds.
She however highlighted that it is possible to spread Science and Technology among young people in Africa, if leaders and key stakeholders are passionate about it.
In his own vein, Touri Bouzekri, Moderator of the Webinar, and President of Moroccan Fulbright Alumni Association (MFAA) hinged that it is possible for the world to be a better place, if science and technology is strategically deployed.
The Webinar was organized by the MFAA in collaboration with the University of Hassan II of Casablanca.