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Dr. Philip Mshelbila, MD/CEO, NLNG

NLNG, LCCI seek business community’s collaboration to promote respiratory technologies for newborns

 

By Abiodun Azi and Funmilola Gboteku

Lagos, Feb. 21, 2024

The Nigeria LNG Limited (NLNG) and  Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) have called for increased collaboration between the business community and science and research sector in Nigeria.

According to them, this will help to close the gaps in meeting the Sustainable  Development Goals (SDGs) especially in reducing neonatal mortality.

They made the call  at the public presentation of the winning work of The Nigeria Prize for Science 2023.

The work, by Prof. Hippolite Amadi, focused on three technological innovations aimed at saving the lives of neonates by making the delivery of oxygen cheap and easy.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the presentation was organised in collaboration with LCCI.

It also reports that the guests at the event included NLNG’s General Manager, External Relations and Sustainable Development, Andy Odeh, represented by Yemi Adeyemi, Acting Manager, Corporate Communication and Public Affairs, NLNG.

Others are the 2023 winner of the Nigeria Prize for Science, Prof. Amadi; the LCCI President, Mr. Gabriel Idahosa; the LCCI Director-General, Dr Chinyere Almona and other LCCI executives.

In his remarks, Odeh said a report by the World Health Organisation (WHO) in 2023 ranked Nigeria as the country with the second highest number of maternal, neonatal and child deaths worldwide.

According to him, Nigeria stands the risk of normalising neonatal mortality if nothing is done to stop it.

“The groundbreaking innovations of Prof. Amadi, as recognised by The Nigeria Prize for Science, are not merely a step forward for our nation but a beacon of hope for the countless newborn lives that hang in the balance.

“We cannot afford to let the cries of our newborns fade into the background of our daily lives.

“The urgency to combat neonatal mortality is a solemn duty to safeguard the future of our nation’s children, and we must answer that call with unwavering determination and immediate, decisive measures.

“NLNG is very proud of Prof. Amadi’s discoveries through The Nigeria Prize for Science.

“Our vision of helping to build a better Nigeria is the core of the Prize, and we believe strongly that the 2023 winning entry speaks in unambiguous terms as one of the ways we can achieve this vision.

“NLNG remains committed to the Prize and will not relent in finding solutions to the nation’s development issues,” he stated.

The LCCI Director-General, Mr. Gabriel Idahosa, stated in his address that the business interactive forum provided a unique opportunity for the Nigerian business community to learn from  Amadi’s work.

Idahosa said that if Nigeria, given its natural endowments, was to successfully transform its economy and achieve significant growth, science and technology and its integration into the socio-economic development process must be accorded the highest priority.

“It is important to note the recognition of Prof. Amadi’s work in the field of newborn and child healthcare, which was selected from over a hundred entries.

“The work is not only based on how it can significantly advance neonatal care in Nigeria but also on how it can improve access and reduce neonatal care costs.

“We urge the government to provide targeted funding toward the local production of healthcare and pharmaceutical devices, as this will help reduce the burden of foreign exchange spent on importing most of our healthcare needs in Nigeria.

“Several lessons can be drawn from this achievement regarding our daily business and personal lives,” he said.

He applauded NLNG, the Prize sponsor, for being one of the best-run public-private partnerships that has consistently contributed to the Nigerian economy through dividends and taxes.

In his presentation, Amadi stated that the Prize had helped the expansion of his research project in Nigeria, which  led to the creation of additional advanced respiratory devices for neonates operable by nurses and local practitioners.

The Nigeria Prize for Science is a $100,000 award sponsored by NLNG to promote innovations in science and technology that will solve age-long problems and drive development in Nigeria.

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