Fresh Gusto For Executive Order 005
…As NOTAP promotes locally motivated technologies, innovations
In a bid for his government to diversify the economy and promote industrialization, President Muhammadu Buhari signed the Executive Order 005 into law with the primary aim to improve the local content in the execution of public funded projects by ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs) of government.
The order is geared towards enhancing the utilization of indigenous skills in the execution of science, engineering and technology contracts and where local expertise is not readily available, Nigerians are encouraged to partner foreign firms in the execution of projects.
Consequently, government also directed MDAs to engage indigenous professionals in the planning, design and execution of national security projects.
The critical stakeholders involved in carrying out these projects include the ministries of works and housing; interior and its parastatals; science and technology; finance, budget and national planning; communications and digital economy; transport; energy and petroleum resources; National Office for Technology Acquisition and Promotion (NOTAP); Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS); Raw Materials Research and Development Council (RMRDC); and Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB).
Keying into government’s directive in term of execution, NOTAP, one of the 17 parastatals under the Ministry of Science and Technology, with the mandate to regulate the inflow of foreign technologies into the country as well as promote locally motivated technologies or innovations has been able to stimulate rapid national economic recovery, stabilise inclusive development and competitiveness using Nigeria’s experts in the STI and other professionals.
Giving the agency’s stewardship towards the implementation of FG’s directive during a media parley with journalists in Abuja, the NOTAP director-general, Dr. DanAzumi Ibrahim, said the office through the collaboration of the Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN) had secured a COREN register of engineering personnel and consulting engineering firms, 2012 edition, pointing out that it generated about 7000 entries of COREN registered engineering personnel and consulting firms in 36 states of Nigeria including the FCT.
He said NOTAP had created a formal registering form in its official website and received more than 1000 entries from Nigerian professionals. The agency, he added, had also engaged in some high-level meetings and discussions with some professional bodies in the country to solicit for cooperation in the execution of this very important national programme.
“Some of these bodies include COREN, Nigeria Academy of Sciences, and TETFUND etc. It may interest you to know that NOTAP has scheduled courtesy visits within the next four weeks to engage the National University Commission (NUC), senior special assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, ministers of interior; works, housing and power; and Association of Professional Bodies of Nigeria (APBN) towards the implementation of the order,” he said.
The NOTAP boss further said that in implementing the directive, it had been able to save government the sum of N79.3 billion in capital flight between 2015 and 2019 through the use of technology transfer pricing guideline by heads of federal ministries, agencies and departments (MDAs).
“This is where Nigeria spends a large sum of money using technical experts from outside the country or foreign companies to undertake such projects. We are specific on people who have indigenous skills to provide direct services as alternative for those who are coming into this country, and that is what we are working on and I assure you that in the nearest future there won’t be foreign contracts.
“Sometimes they may say they needed about 10 per cent when the guideline provided for only a maximum of five per cent. And this five per cent can only be given to complex technologies.
“Where we see that your technology is not complex, we may insist to do one or two per cent. So, if you had earlier requested for six or seven per cent, now we have given you approval for two per cent, the difference is part of the savings”, he said.
Ibrahim urged Nigerians to support the initiative by government to advance the country’s economy.
“Many countries are using their citizens in the Diaspora to develop the prosperity of their country and Nigeria should become part of this revolution because the growth of this country lies on the shoulder of each and every one of us to collectively move Nigeria forward,” he added.