Niger Delta University and NDDC to collaborate on research

In order to promote research that would address the peculiar health and environmental concerns in the Niger Delta region, the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has promised to work with the Niger Delta University (NDU), Amassoma in Bayelsa State.

The pledge was given by NDDC Managing Director Dr. Samuel Ogbuku during a courtesy visit to the Commission’s Port Harcourt offices by a university delegation.

He said: “We want to collaborate with the NDU in the area of research and I challenge the university to go into research that will focus on ecological challenges, food production and herbal medicine.”

He stated: “Our work at the NDDC goes beyond building roads and bridges; we are also concerned about manpower development which is the forte of universities. Our interventions are not limited to building physical infrastructure. The research from universities is equally important as we have challenges in the area of erosion and flooding. Universities should help us to find solutions that will endure. Research from universities should give us the comprehensive solutions we need.

“We are prepared to collaborate with universities to provide solutions to the problems facing the region. Let us invest in the area of research to help us to appropriately intervene in the lives of our people.”

Ogbuku gave his word that the NDDC was prepared to give universities in the area the assistance they required in order to give priority to research aimed at resolving social problems.

Noting that the institution had recently benefited from the Commission’s “Operation Light up the Niger Delta Programme,” he informed the Vice Chancellor of NDU that Sir Victor Antai, the NDDC Executive Director of Projects, will lead a team on a site visit to the university to identify their requirements.

Previously, the NDU was referred to be a manpower development centre for the region by Vice-Chancellor Professor Allen Agih, who praised the NDDC’s efforts in increasing the capacity of institutions in the Niger Delta region.

He said: “We thank the NDDC management for the numerous projects executed in the university, including the on-going solar-powered street light project that has improved security and night life within the campus.”

“We are here to seek partnership with the commission in different areas, notably, in the areas of research in herbal medicine and food security. We have a department of herbal medicine, which when fully harnessed, with your collaboration, will provide skills, generate employment opportunities and improve healthcare in the region.”

Agih stated that cooperation with the NDDC was essential considering the limited resources the university had to pursue its goal of having a good influence on the Niger Delta area.

The Vice-Chancellor bemoaned that “all our lecturers live outside the university” and made a plea for help in establishing an ICT (information and communication technology) hub as well as housing lecturers on campus.