From Esther Akaa, Lafia
A professor of Political Economy and Development Studies at the Nasarawa State University, Keffi (NSUK), Prof. Eugene Aliegba, has called on the federal government to adopt strategies from South Korea’s industrial experience to achieve Nigeria’s industrialisation and economic development.
Prof. Aliegba made the call at the 37th inaugural lecture held on Wednesday at the University in Keffi Local Government Area of Nasarawa State.
According to him, strategic planning and consistency in policy is a key factor in driving a country’s Industrialization process as is evident in South Korea hence the need for the federal government to adopt the strategy for the industrial development of Nigeria.
“Economic development and Industrialization in Southern Korea was achieved through strategic planning. Industrial success was based on choosing particular industries at a particular point and time, addressing and designating it as priority areas.
“Nigeria’s industrial development will improve if we embrace the culture of strategic planning and consistency in policy formulation irrespective of the government or party in power,” he said.
The don added that priority must also be given to research and development, technological transfer and licencing which according to him greatly changed the development of the Korean economy and could positively impact that of Nigeria if adopted.
He also called on the federal government to invest heavily in infrastructure, education, the development of human talents and retaining the educated citizens to develop and improve the Nigerian economy just like the South Korea model.
Aliegba explained further that another lesson Nigeria can learn from South Korea is the need for a strong state and a strong and visionary leader as major catalyst for development in Nigeria.
“Again the miracle in South Korea was due to good governance. It did prioritize it’s programmes and was consistent in implementation. Also it had strong reputations and was strong on state corruption laws.
“There was deliberate efforts by the leaders to get it right for the country and it’s citizens. This and so many more are part of the South Korea’s industrial experience that federal government can key into to transform Nigeria into a developed economy and major industrial nation like South Korea,” he said.
In his remarks, former governor of Benue State and a friend of the inaugural lecturer, Sen. Gabriel Suswam described the topic as interesting, saying it will expose the setbacks in Nigeria’s drive towards industrialisation and the way forward.
“At some point in the past Nigeria was ahead of South Korea. Unfortunately we derailed at some point and they overtook us and now South Korea is an industrialized country and a developed economy while we are still developing.
“I think the Inaugural lecturer will touch on that and we will know where we have made the mistake and what we need to do to also be in the league of developed economies and industrialised nations,” he said.
On his part, the Vice Chancellor, NSUK, Prof Suleiman Bala-Mohammed represented by , Deputy Vice Chancellor (DVC) Academics, Prof. Abdullahi Modibbo lauded the inaugural lecturer for the chosen topic which he described as apt.
“This topic is very apt particularly in this period that we are yearning for industrial development in our dear country. We don’t expect anything than a very broad presentation that will add value to our development in this country,” he said.
The Voice reports that the topic of the University’s 37th inaugural lecture was “The Developmental State and Industrialisation in Nigeria: Lessons from South Korea”.