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  • Updated: February 22, 2023

Nigeria's Space Programme Should Involve Relevant Stakeholders - Expert

Nigeria's Space Programme Should Involve Relevant Stakeholde

Professor Spencer Onuh, a space engineer has stated that in order to reap the benefits of space science and technology, Nigerian space programmes must involve the appropriate parties.

In an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, Onuh said that individuals in the informal sector, such as farmers and business owners, may receive training on how to exploit data from space.

“Many people just know that I can use my Automated Teller Machine, my mobile phone but the farmer, fisherman, town planners can use the space programme as well.

“They are not really aware of how they can get this information for what they do and apply it to improve their businesses and entrepreneurship ventures.

“There are organs of government in a place like the National Orientation Agency that can pass this information, these people can be reached through their leaders, unions,’’ he said.

The expert claimed that they can learn how to connect their operations to space programmes for information using those platforms.

”Before you know it, the space programme application will become a norm for people to go on the space programme archive for data, information,” Onuh said.

He added that the government might work with investors and businesspeople to create a public-private partnership.

Onuh noted that it may cost up to $25,000 to collect and retrieve a procedure from some space data that lasts for roughly 15 seconds.

“If you have a businessman who is interested and can invest in earth observation, he can archive the data and anyone who wants data will pay a token,’’ Onuh said.

"That is how it is done even in advanced countries, the government has now brought space data down to the people.

"If anyone wants any information, data from space, they should go to those private companies rather than approaching the government,” Onuh said.

The expert advised Nigerian investors to invest in communication satellites while companies turned to Earth Observation and Navigation satellites, noting how impatient Nigerian investors might be.

A Synthetic Radar Aperture satellite, according to Onuh, would be appropriate for Nigeria given the difficulties the nation faces and its location as a cloud-covered African nation.

“I will suggest a Synthetic Radar Aperture satellite so that either night or day, cloud or not, you can capture your data and process clear information.

“Though it is expensive and the process is longer, but it is useful, longer and doable,’’ Onuh said

Additionally, he advised maintaining the Nigerian Space Programmes' ongoing growth of space science technology.

“Space programmes require infrastructure, we are not concentrating on infrastructure very much and we need to empower its channels to carry out that infrastructural development.

“In continuity, there is a convergence between the government and its agencies, the agencies give the government ideas and push to ensure that its mandates are achieved,’’ he said. 

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