By Aliyu Dangida
The Director-General of National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Malam Kashifu Inuwa has said that NITDA and Federal University Dutse have agreed to partner in the area of using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to modernize agricultural practices in order for our people to get maximum benefit from their investment in agriculture.
Kashifu who stated this at the maiden national conference organized by the Centre for Semi-Arid Research and Development (CSRD) of the Bilyaminu Usman Polytechnic, Hadeijia, with the theme Functional Education and Demand Driven Research for Sustainable Development said we need to use AI smart agriculture and internet of things to improve agriculture and produce students who will establish smart Agric startups for the benefit of our communities.
He said already the university through the Centre for Agricultural Research and Extension Services (CARES) have provided land where this innovative thinking can be domesticated adding that students are being selected to participate in the process in order to take the ideas further.
The DG said information technology is breaking new ground hitherto thought as impossible and therefore agriculture which is the mainstay of our economy needs to benefit from this new thinking so that our local farmers can get value for their money adding they NITDA is open to any new research ideas whose outcome will end in products and services.
The Vice-Chancellor of Federal University Dutse Prof. Abdulkarim Sabo Muhammed who chaired the occasion said time has come for researches to be translated into something tangible for our communities.
He said it is not enough for researchers to aim at publishing in high impact journal alone without thinking of how his immediate community will benefit from their research adding that ideally research should be carried out to solve community problems.
The VC advised prospective researchers to motivate themselves because most of the time the conducive environment may not be there but a good researcher looks beyond government funding to achieve his objective. He commended TETfund and NITDA for their effort in funding research and promoting collaboration with higher institutions.
Prof. Haruna Usman of FUD who delivered the keynote address harped o the need for students to strive to acquire real knowledge instead of certificate.