Written by Sarah NEGEDU

NCC give N50m research grant to universities

Nine researchers in Nigerian universities recently received N50million research grants from the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, to ensure the growth of the telecommunications industry in the country.

Speaking after the presentation of award letters to the Winners of the 2016, 2017 Research Proposals the researchers, the Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof Umar Danbatta said the grants would go a long way in transforming the Nigerian telecom sector.

He said the Grant is to assist the Universities to come up with research results that will transform the telecom industry in the area of efficient and effective service delivery, access to telecom service, innovative ideas, ICT applications that will create employment resulting in prototypes that will improve services to the citizens of the country.

The Commission instituted the Research Proposals Grant Project in recognition of the role of the Academia to the development of the sector in Nigeria. The Academia provides the research results that govern growth, transformations and facilitate innovations in the industry.

Revealing how the researchers were selected, the EVC said in 2016, 56 proposals from the academia were selected but only three were chosen.

Danbatta said, under the Project, tertiary institutions submit detailed and well thought out Research Proposal to the Commission on innovative use of telecommunications to solve national problems.

“The expectation is for research result that will transform the telecom industry in the area of efficient and effective service delivery, access to telecom service, innovative ideas, ICT applications that will create employment resulting in prototypes that will improve services to the citizens of this country, so we have a number of expectations from this effort that NCC is intentionally funding.”

He said, “in 2016, 56 proposals from the Academia were received by the Commission; however, only three proposals were selected by the Inter-Agency Committee, comprising of the Academia and industry members, to be awarded Grants.

“In the year 2017, of the ninety six (96) received proposals, after stringent evaluations, six (6) proposals were also successful. This shows how serious and stringent the evaluation of the proposals are”, he said.

He urged the awardees to abide by the terms and conditions for the grant.

A breakdown of the N50million grants is as follows; Prof Francis Waihala of Covenant University, Ota (N9.321m); Engr Mahmood  Abdulhameed of Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi-(N5,916m); Dr Cyprian Anayochukwu of Enugu State University of Science and Technology- (N1,381m); Dr Olusegun Peter Awe of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife (N3.545m); Dr Suleiman Sani of ABU (N12.332m); and Dr Stella Orakwe of the University of Port-harcourt (N5.265m).

Others are, Engr Oluseun Oyeleke of Nigerian Airforce Institute, Kaduna (N5m); Dr Kehinde Agbele of Elizade University, Ondo state and Prof SB Junaidu of ABU, Zaria (N6, 995m).

Speaking on behalf of the awardees, Prof. Sani Suleiman, of ABU, Zaria thanked the Commission for the confidence of finding them qualified for the research work and assured quality and timely delivery of the project.

He however, urged the commission to ensure that the laudable initiative be extended to Telecom Operators through partnership.

 

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