Everest Amaefule, Abuja

Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, on Tuesday announced a plan to give agencies under his supervision and offer top performing ones rewards.

According to the minister, the best rated agency would get a cash reward of N1bn. The second placed agency would get a cash reward of N500m, while the third placed agency would get  N250m.

Onu who made announcement at the quarterly meeting of agencies with the ministry in Abuja said he was instituting the competition to encourage the agencies to come up with research products that address challenges facing the country.

He also disclosed that a Competitiveness Assessment Committee to be drawn from some professional bodies including the Nigerian Academy of Science and the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria was being constituted.

According to him, sanctions would also be meted to poorly performing agencies.

He said, “It has become necessary to ensure that there is effective competition within the various agencies in the ministry. Those that perform creditably will be rewarded, while those who perform poorly will be punished.

“All agencies are expected to set specific targets within their mandate, which should be accomplished within a specified period of time. The assessment of various agencies will be flexible, in accordance with the laws that established them, in order to ensure that there is fairness without bias in their assessment.

“Distinguished Nigerians from both outside the ministry and government will perform the assessment. A Competitiveness Assessment Committee will be set up to accomplish this.”

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