THE Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG), through its university support programme, has invested a sum of $12 million in six universities in the country.
Speaking during the inauguration of NLNG/University of Ilorin Engineering Research Centre in Ilorin, the managing director of the company, Mr. Babs Omotowa, listed the benefiting universities under the support programme as Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria; University of Ilorin (UNILORIN); University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN); University of Ibadan (UI); University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID), and University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT).
Mr Omotowa said that one of the company’s “approaches is to develop Nigerian human capital and foster technological advancement in our great country.”
“We recognise that universities are one of the critical fertile grounds from which ideas to fast-track Nigeria’s progress will spring from. With this programme Nigeria LNG is partnering with six universities in Nigeria to uplift engineering teaching and research in our tertiary institutions.
“On its part, Nigeria LNG invested two million dollars each to build and equip world-class engineering facilities in these schools.”
He also said that the universities were chosen based on their relative ranking in their geo-political zones by the Nigerian Universities Commission (NUC) and the world ranking of universities.
Omotowa also said that the organisation has reduced gas flaring in the country from 65 per cent to 20 per cent, and that Nigeria is no longer in the league of top five gas-flaring countries in the world.
“One of the reasons why Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG) was established was to reduce gas flaring in the country. When we started, Nigeria was flaring about 65 per cent of its gas. We were the second highest gas flaring nation in the world.
“Through the construction of the six trains we have in NLNG, we have helped to bring that down to about 20 per cent, and today we are no longer top five gas flaring countries in the world. So, we are very proud that we have contributed to the environmental improvement in the country and the health implications of this.”
In a remark, Kwara State governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed, represented by the Commissioner for Education and Human Capital Development, Alhaji Musa Yeketi, said that “NLNG, a major global gas supplier, has been a huge revenue earner for the country. Practically, every state in the country has felt the positive impact of this company as proven by the huge tax which the company paid to the Federal Government last year, which was utilised as a bailout fund for several states.
“The company’s intervention in the domestic LPG market has also guaranteed product availability and stabilised prices in the country. It is my prayer that Nigeria LNG will continue to enjoy the goodwill of the Nigerian government and people for being such a worthy and committed partner in the country’s advancement.”
Earlier, the vice chancellor of UNILORIN, Professor Abdulganiyu Ambali, appreciated the thoughtfulness of NLNG’s choice intervention area based on the problems confronting Nigeria’s developmental efforts.
“It is engineering, whether we talk of stable electricity, good water supply, motorable roads or safe and secure housing as well as other components of our much-needed infrastructure.
“We realize largely, the success of the country is that of engineering and the failure is also the failure of engineering. In other words, if Nigeria gets her engineering right, she will get her bearing right,” Prof Ambali added.