The University recently hosted participants of the Senior Executive Course (Sec) No. 39 from the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS), Kuru, Plateau State, who visited FUNAAB, as part of their local study tour. Speaking on their mission, the NIPSS Team Leader, Dr. Nasirdeen Usman, disclosed that the Senior Executive Course, which is the flagship programme of the institute, is a 10-month intensive programme, which includes local and international study tours. He noted that the institute was policy-based and engages in evidence-based research with the theme tagged; “Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) for the Development of Agriculture and Agro-allied Industries in Nigeria”.

Dr. Usman added that every year, the Presidentof the Federal Republic of Nigeria, usually chooses a theme, based on current national importance, where participants would be required to conduct indebt research and at the end, a comprehensive report would be submitted to the President-in-Council with key recommendations and implementation strategy. “This year, in the wisdom of Mr. President, he chose a theme, which is quite central to FUNAAB. Mr. President wants this course to investigate on the deployment of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) for the development of agriculture and agro-allied industries in Nigeria. Based on the theme of the course, there is no way we would visit Ogun State without visiting FUNAAB because that is the engine room, to derive any STI that would improve agriculture and any allied industry”.

Dr. Usman stated thatNIPSS, which was established in 1979, serves as an apex and high-level centre for policy, research, reflection and dialogue and has the primary objectives of serving as the nation’s foremost policy‘think-tank’ by developing a crop of top-class technocrats of high intellectual capacity, who would conceptualise and anchor the implementation of innovative, dynamic policy initiatives and strategies that are critical for national development.According to him, the institute aims to be a model institution for inculcating the highest national ideals and achieving the best results from a rational deployment and utilisation of resources, adding that to achieve these objectives, the institute conducts courses for top level policy makers and executors, drawn from different sectors of the country, with a view to widening their outlook, perspectives on issues and by improving their conceptual capacity, quality of analysis and decision making.

Others include conducting research into the social, cultural, economic, political, scientific, technological, security and other problems that face Nigeria, in order to contribute to the search for their solutions, conducting of seminars, workshops and other action-orientated programmes for leaders and potential leaders in the public service, private sector, political organisations, professional bodies and other groups so as to enhance their appreciation of long-range national plans and objectives by applying themselves to solving these problems as well as organising brainstorming sessions for the purposes of discussing urgent national issues and recommending policy measures for a way out.

The Vice-Chancellor of FUNAAB, Professor Olusola Oyewole, while welcoming the team members, appreciated the Permanent Secretary, Political Affairs and Administration, Ogun State Government, Mrs. Funmi Ajayi, for leading the team to the University. He gave a brief presentation on the University’s vision, mission, strategic goals and mandates. The Vice-Chancellor added that graduates of the University were trained to be employers of labours and not job-seekers, noting that recently, graduates of the University were adjudged to be the second best and most employable graduates in Nigeria. The team toured the University’s Industrial Park Unit, farms, fish pond, ‘fufu’ processing plant and bakery, among others.