Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said lack of functional infrastructure had slowed down the country’s economy over the years.
Osinbajo, who stated this at the 42nd Annual Conference of Association For Consulting Engineering in Nigeria (ACEN), in Abuja, Thursday said the adequacy of infrastructure determines a country’s success or failure in diversifying production, coping with population growth, poverty alleviation and environmental conditions.
“This is because a meaningful infrastructural development is no doubt the path to the enhancement of the standard of living of the people, and to achieve it, we must adopt engineering as the bedrock,” Vice President who was represented at the event by the Minister of Water Resources, Engr. Suleiman Adamu, said.
He disclosed that the government has commenced extensive investment in the road sector, power, water resources, aviation, agriculture, oil and gas.
He pledged government’s commitment to promote local content in contracts as well as in science, engineering and technology.
He therefore urged engineers to key into competitiveness in the country.
According to him, engineering is at the root of development and any nation wishing to achieve development must adopt engineering as the bedrock of such a venture.
Osinbajo said: “There is no doubt that ACEN has a great role to play being the business arm of the engineering family charged with the development of Nigeria. It is clear that for any developing country to grow, infrastructure must be at the forefront. It is also evident that Africa has huge potentials, but the lack of adequate infrastructure is affecting it and Nigeria is no exception.”
The vice president said the Administration of President Muhammadu Buhari will continue to support Nigerian Engineers in their bid to promote professionalism and competitiveness in the committee of nations.
Earlier, ACEN President, George Okoroma, said: “We are looking at how the economy can be recovered, and it is only engineers that can lay the foundation for the growth.”
He stressed that the government patronising foreign engineers was unfair to the Nigerian counterparts, blaming the trends on the policy makers who are not willing to engage them in government projects.