NIGERIAN SOCIETY OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERS
COMMUNIQUE OF 22ND FELLOWS’ CONFERENCE OF NIGERIAN SOCIETY OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERS (NSChE)
CONFERENCE THEME: “TRANSFORMING THE NATION THROUGH NIGERIA’S INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION PLAN”
PREAMBLE: The Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers held its 22nd Annual Fellows’ Conference at Sheraton Hotel & Towers, Ikeja, Lagos on October 9, 2014. The Conference was chaired by Mr.Foluso Phillips, Executive Chairman, Phillips Consulting Group while Dr. Patrick Kormawa, UNIDO Representative to Nigeria and ECOWAS and Director, Regional Office, Abuja, Nigeria served as the Guest Speaker.
Other important dignitaries who attended the Conference were:
· Engr. Anthony Sobo, FAEng, FiChemE, First President, NSChE and former General Technical Manager, Lever Brothers Nigeria, Plc
· Prof.Ayodele Ogunye, FAEng, FIChemE, Immediate Past President of Nigerian Academy of Engineering and Past President, NSChE
· Engr. Alex Ogedegbe, FAEng, FNSChE, Chairman, ILF Engineers Nigeria Ltd. and formerly Group Executive Director, Engineering & Technology, NNPC
· Prof. Francis Olatunji, FNSChE, Former Dean of Post Graduate School, University of Lagos.
· Dr. N. John Erinne, FNSChE,CEO, Matrix Petro-Chem Ltd and Immediate Past President, NSChE.
· Prof. E. N. Wami, FNSChE, Dean, School of Engineering, Federal University, Wukari and Deputy National President, NSChE
· Engr. (Dr.) Abubakar L. Yar’Adua, FNSChE, National President, NSChE and Former Group Managing Director, NNPC.
The Conference which was attended by over forty (40) participants from the Fellowship Cadre of NSChE featured a healthy discourse on the elaborate remarks and submission of the Chairman of the occasion, Mr.Folusho Phillips, which was followed by an incisive presentation by the Guest Speaker, Dr. Patrick Kormawa, both on the theme of the Conference.
The Conference noted as follows:
1. Nigeria is a vibrant and diverse economy with services accounting for more than 50 percent of GDP in 2013, agriculture 22% and Oil 14 percent.Manufacturing and creative arts industries contribute much less but are identified to be on the growth trajectory. Growth rate of the economy over the past 10 years is in the region of 6% per annum. Paradoxically however, poverty still pervades, with recent data from National Bureau of Statistics showing that 46.0% of the population live in less than US$1. 25/day.
2. The World Economic Forum (WEF) ranked Nigeria in the 127th position out of 144 countries in the annual competitiveness rankings for 2014-2015. The ranking points to the country’s productivity and attractiveness rating for investment, for doing business and for being seen as a nice place to work and live.
3. UNIDO, as a United Nations specialized agency, has continued to provide support and vital partnership to government at various levels and to the private sector, in key areas which impact positively on manufacturing and trade in the country, most of which are relevant and of key to Chemical Engineers, including:
· Agribusiness and Agro-Industries Development
· Trade Capacities Building
· Quality Infrastructure
· Energy and Environmental Programmes
· Metals and Solid Minerals Processing
· Facilitation of Petrochemicals, Fertilizers, and Refinery projects
4. Nigeria’s Industrial Revolution Plan (NIRP) indeed captures the peculiarities of the Nigerian situation and sets the direction that is truly attuned to utilizing the best of the country’s assets where comparative advantage exists, especially in the areas of :
· Agro Allied and Agro Processing Industries
· Metals and Solid Minerals Processing
· Oil and Gas related Industries
· Construction, Light Manufacturing and Service
5 NIRP targets of increase in manufacturing contribution to GDP from 4% to over 10% by 2017 and addition of about five trillion Naira to manufacturing annual revenues are very laudable plans by the Government.
6. Chemical Engineers who by training are specialists in processing and manufacturing, are essential to the successful realization of the lofty goals of NIRP and are enthusiastic to partner with government for its realization.
The Conference recommended as follows:
1. Rapid development of the industrial sector, leading to transformation of Nigeria to an industrial society, is strongly recommended as the most effective weapon for creation of jobs, as well as drastic reduction of employment and poverty in Nigeria.
2. The Federal Government should therefore pursue the program of implementation of the NIRP to achieve full realization. In particular, keen attention should be paid to institution of an effective mechanism for monitoring and control of progress, at every stage, as this has been the bane of several similar national initiatives in the past.
3. Governments at all levels and the private sector are encouraged to take full advantage of the very laudable support programs and partnerships offered by UNIDO to enhance and accelerate industrial development, modernize manufacturing practices and improve efficiency and competitiveness.
4. Government should leverage on the expertise of Nigerian Chemical Engineers as Process and Manufacturing Specialists by engaging them as necessary to advise and assist in developing plans and programs for the industrial development of the country.
5. Nigerian Chemical Engineers, through NSChE, are also called upon to make greater efforts to establish linkages with the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade & Investment, for the industrial development of the nation. In particular, we should seek to participate in the appropriate organs of the on-going MRP programs, especially at the Project Office and Sectoral Team levels.
6. NSChE is also encouraged to seek and establish partnership with UNIDO for the enhancement of the laudable programs of the organisation.
7. In order for the country to achieve a radical improvement in WEF ranking and accelerate FDI inflows for industrial development, inclusive and sustainable growth, prosperity for all and a peaceful nation, Government at all levels should:
· Use public funds judiciously and show accountability.
· Adopt merit and expertise in making public appointments.
· Accelerate the prosecution of war against terrorism to its logical conclusion.
· Ensure security of life and property in words and action
· Make the dream of uninterrupted electrical power supply to industries and homes become reality.
Signed for and on behalf of Conference participants
Engr. (Dr.) Abubakar L. Yar’Adua, FNSChE