By Ali Imran
ISLAMABAD: OIC’s Standing Committee on Scientific and Technological Cooperation (COMSTECH) launched COMSTECH-Nigeria Science and Technology Cooperation Program in a press conference which has also been attended by senior diplomats of various OIC countries, officers of ministries of foreign affairs and science and technology, academicians and Nigerian students studying in local universities.
Coordinator General, COMSTECH, Prof Dr M Iqbal Choudhary and the High Commissioner of Nigeria, H.E. Mr Mohammed Bello Abioye jointly addressed a press conference at COMSTECH Auditorium.
Prof Choudhary said that COMSTECH continues to serve member states in the sphere of Science & Technology as its mandate and strategic vision.
He said COMSTECH has conducted a large number of activities for Science & Technology and Health Care capacity building along with fostering international linkages. He said many new initiatives have been launched including fellowship program in the OIC system, Health Africa initiative, S&T profiling of the member states, and research projects support programs.
He said that COMSTECH launches a purposeful COMSTECH-Nigeria S&T Cooperation Program for capacity building of the brotherly state. Prof Choudhary thanked the Government of Nigeria for accepting proposed collaborative program and constituting an inter-ministerial Committee to explore the implementation of this initiative.
The Raw Materials Research and Development Council, (RMRDC), Abuja, Nigeria is focal organization to implement the program. He said that Nigeria is a growing economy which can play a leading role in the development of the other African countries.
Prof. Choudhary informed that the purpose of this collaboration is to help the Nigerian S&T institutions for capacity building for socio-economic uplift of the country making to business with The High Commissioner of Nigeria, H. E. Mr. Mohammed Bello Abioye appreciated the efforts of COMSTECH and offered full support from his office to COMSTECH-Nigeria S&T Cooperation. He assured that Nigeria would also help the other African OIC countries for their uplift.
HE Ambassador Askar Mussinov, Assistant Secretary General Science and Technology OIC addressed the session online. He said OIC General Secretariat is working closely with COMSTECH on several major initiatives and programs. He also appreciated efforts of Coordinator General COMSTECH for taking a large number of activities for science and technology and healthcare capacity building and for fostering international linkages, specially Palestine, Yemen, Sudan, Nigeria, and Somalia. He assured that this cooperation will certainly open new avenues for the socio-economic uplift and to achieve the sustainable development goals.
The representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Pakistan Mr. Mohammad Adeel also appreciated the efforts of COMSTECH for promotion of science diplomacy in OIC region and assured full cooperation for launch of such collaborative programs with other OIC member states.
COMSTECH-Nigeria Program includes Launching of women scientist research fellowship program, institution linkages between Nigeria and Pakistan, capacity building of Nigerian scholars and students, launching of book comprising of joint research publications and patents of Pakistani and Nigerian scientists, industrial internship of Nigerian professionals in food processing and value addition, and study visit of Pakistani students to Nigeria.