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1st made-in-Nigeria satellite to be launched by 2018 – Bulama

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The Minister of Science and Technology,
Dr Abdu Bulama, said on Tuesday in Abuja that
Nigeria would design, fabricate, test and launch
its indigenous satellite by 2018.
Bulama stated this when he inspected facilities
at the Obasanjo Space Centre of the National
Space Research and Development Agency
(NASRDA).
The minister said the centre had the mandate to
launch Nigeria’s first indigenous satellite by
2018, and described space science and
technology programme as an important
component of the Nigerian dream.
According to him, the satellite programme has a
very positive role to play in the transformation
agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan’s
administration.
Bulama directed that the assembly, testing and
integration centre, and the Synthetic Aperture
Rader Satellite, which are under construction, be
completed by 2015.
“The Assembly, Testing and Integration Centre,
and the Synthetic Aperture Rader Satellite are
the nucleus of NASRDA.
“It is here that we will, by the grace of God,
launch our first made in Nigeria satellite by
2018.
“By 2018, by the grace of God, we want to see
made-in-Nigeria satellite launched. It will be
built in this laboratory and launched by our
Nigerian scientists,” he said.
According to him, competence and capabilities in
satellite technology serve as tool for national
growth and a huge contribution to the
development and benefit of mankind.
Earlier, the Director-General of NASRDA, Dr
Seidu Mohammed, who conducted Bulama
round the facilities, said the agency could boast
of world-class technology in term of facilities.
Mohammed said that the about six million U.S.
dollars (about N1 billion) annual budgetary
allocation to NASRDA was inadequate, given the
huge development expected of the agency.
The director-general also said that no serious
country allocates less than 100 million U.S.
dollars to its space agency.
According to him, NASRDA pays N1.6 million
monthly to an Israeli company to maintain
facilities at one of the centres of the agency,
and also spends 100 pounds servicing its two
dishes.
He said the Emergency Management Project of
the agency could be used in tracking kidnapped
victims, car theft, pipeline vandalisation, fire
outbreak, flood and accidents.

_Vanguard.

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