The Director-General, National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP), Dr. Ibrahim DanAzumi,
has said expressed regret that the Office has to inevitably shelve the commemoration of the African Intellectual Property Day (AIPD) because of the ravaging COVID-19 pandemic.
Usually, 13th September of every year is commemorated in all African States as African Day for Technology and Intellectual Property (IP) Right, the Office affirmed in a statement made available to SHARPEDGENEWS on Sunday night.
This commemoration, the agency said is usually in compliance with the resolution made by the then Organization of African Unity (OAU) now African Union (AU) Council of Ministers and Assembly of Heads of State and Governments at Addis Ababa-Ethiopia in July, 1999 to celebrate the day across the continent.
According to the DG, the event is usually held to arouse the latent creativity and inventive spirit of young inventors and innovators being one of the ways through which rapid development of a nation can be assured.
He added that it was also to further sensitize and facilitate the domestication of Technology and development of the Intellectual Property Right (IPRs) system in Africa and reawaken the creative ability of the people in the continent to eradicate poverty and drive sustainable development.
He further stated that no nation of the earth can grow without adequate development and deployment of science, technology and innovation.
‘NOTAP as an agency saddled with the responsibility of promoting the inventive and innovative spirit of Nigerian has over the years, on behalf of the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology commemorated this day to demonstrate to our children and youth the importance of IPR to nation-building.”
He reiterated that technology and intellectual property systems have long been recognized to be among the foremost important factors in nation-building and wealth creation. “Ideas and knowledge are increasingly becoming veritable instruments in international trade relations as codified in the Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property (TRIPS) under the World Trade Organization (WTO) agreement to which Nigeria is a signatory since January 1, 1995”.
He further said that NOTAP had in the past celebrated the day through technology exhibitions by secondary and Vocational schools within and around FCT, Nigerian young inventors and innovators as well as the Association of Nigerian Inventors (ANI).
He said that young Nigerians have demonstrated high intellect and commitment to the development of the Nigerian innovation sector through their products.
He said because secondary schools children are the major exhibitors at the event and in accordance with the global and Presidential Committee on COVID-19 protocols, the Office decided to shelve it and prepare adequately for 2021 Commemoration.
He stressed that in today’s knowledge-based economy and global business environment, absorption of new technology has become a veritable component for companies to survive through maintaining their competitive positions in the market place and for a nation-state, technology is used as a tool to enhance national competitiveness. “Nations are no longer valued in terms of their population, geographical landmass or mineral resources but on the organic mass of knowledge in its citizenry.”
According to him, “Unless Nigeria develops the technical manpower to attract and domesticate foreign technology for our daily operations, it may be difficult for it to meet up with the challenges of unemployment, poverty, wealth creation and youth restiveness.
He said NOTAP is working seriously in collaboration with other stakeholders to ensure rapid technological development of the nation, hence the need to continuously sensitize Nigerians and indeed other African Countries on the need to develop indigenous technology.