By G9ija

The Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, has said the recently approved Science, Technology and Innovation(STI) television station in Abuja would come into operation early 2022.

Onu said this on Friday during an interview with news men.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the STI TV was recently granted a provisional licence to operate by the Nigeria Broadcasting Commission.

The minister said the TV station was the first of its kind in the country, adding that it would focus on promoting STI programmes and nation building.

Onu said no country had ever developed without the effective and efficient deployment of STI.

“We have seen what have been happening to our country because we dwelt on commodities in the past but luckily for us it is now being diversified.

“This ministry has been pushing to make sure that our economy depends on knowledge that is innovation driven.

“The television station is very important; it will help in advocacy to let the Nigerian public appreciate the importance of STI`, he said.

According to the minister, such measures will the Federal Government build a great Nigeria.

“We are in the process of starting the station but we are going to work quickly to make sure that it comes into operation early next year,’’ Onu said.

The minister said the station would expose young ones to STI and engender their interest in studying sciences and mathematics.

“We want to use this TV station to let our young ones know many things about natural phenomena which many people try to shield with superstition,’’ Onu said.

Modalities in place for the running of the station, he said included a committee that involved the 17 agencies under the ministry which would collaborate for effective operations.

According to him, “we are starting with the ministry, then we can now expand to universities, polytechnics, other research institutes, industrial laboratories and the informal sector and everybody within the STI system.

Dr Felix Ale, Chairman, Technical Committee on the establishment of the STI TV said it was a good platform to project science and technology as a critical sector of the economy growth.

Ale said the technical committee would consider producing programmes in the three major languages, namely, Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba to create greater impact and generate more interest among young people.

NAN reports that as a promotion to Executive Order 005, the TV station would be expected to operate on an indigenous signal carrier by the Nigeria Communication Satellite Limited (NigComSat).