The Deputy Governor of Kaduna state, Dr Hadiza Balarabe, has noted that Biotechnology will play a key role in the industrialisation of the state, create more jobs and enhance its economy.
Dr Balarabe who made this known at the opening of the first annual symposium of the Biotechnology Society of Nigeria, Northwest Zone, said that Kaduna State Government has began ‘’laying the foundation to transform the economy to be private sector-driven.’’
‘’Our overarching goal is industrializing the state, thereby creating jobs and a vibrant economy. We are determined to follow this positive economic trajectory, knowing quite well that industrialization will revolutionize the production of goods for domestic consumption and export.
‘’Because of the practical use of biological processes in industrial production, biotechnology will play a key role in the attainment of this goal”, she pointed out.
The Deputy Governor also tasked Biotechnologists to use their profession to increase the nation’s food production and make Nigeria attain self-sufficiency.
Balarabe argued that with the projected population growth that will reach 450 million by the year 2050, Biotechnologists should bring up plans to ‘’ help us grow enough food by increasing productivity’’.
The Deputy Governor who chaired the symposium which had the theme, “Biotechnology as a Tool of Achieving Sustainable Development in the 21st Century”, pointed out that Biotechnology is ‘’critical in the fields of food-production, renewable raw-materials and energy, pollution- prevention and bioremediation”.
According to her, ‘’encouraging the growth of Biotechnology in the state will significantly impact on pharmaceuticals, animal health, agriculture, textiles, chemicals, plastic, paper, biofuels and food.
“With benefits cutting across all strata of society, it will support the creation of new jobs, sustainable development, public health and environmental protection. This simply means that countries like ours, must restrategise with a focus on biotechnology-based researches, to improve food and cash crops to eradicate hunger”, she added.
Meanwhile, the Biotechnology Society of Nigeria has given Dr Balarabe the title of the ‘’Ambassador of Biotechnology Development in Kaduna and North-western states.’’
The Vice Chancellor of Taraba State University and Chair of BSN Board of Trustees, Professor Vincent A Tenebe said the award was in recognition of her excellent contribution to science as a Medical Doctor.
Other personalities conferred with various awards are the Emir of Zazzau, Ambassador Nuhu Ahmad Bamalli, and the immediate past Vice Chancellor of Kaduna State University, Professor Barnabas Quryx.