Buhari Asks NASRDA To Utilise Satellite Facilities For Security, Others

President Muhammadu Buhari at a meeting with members of the National Space Council of NASRDA and others in Abuja on June 24, 2021.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has tasked the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) to effectively utilise the satellite facilities at its disposal towards resolving the critical issues confronting Nigeria, particularly in the areas of security, improved communication, and digital penetration, as well as agriculture.

He gave the charge on Thursday at a meeting with members of the National Space Council of the agency at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

The President expressed a renewed commitment to the space sector, describing it as the foundation of cybersecurity and a vibrant digital economy.

“No doubt Space is providing a new frontier for human development,” he was quoted as saying in a statement by his media aide, Garba Shehu.

He added, “As a stimulus for increased technological advancement and economic innovation, outer space offers a unique challenge and platform for effective exploration and exploitation of our natural resources and the protection of our environment.

“Moreover, space technology remains the foundation for cybersecurity and a vibrant digital economy.”

To this end, President Buhari directed the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, to prepare and submit a revised 25-year roadmap for the implementation of the National Space Policy to the Federal Executive Council for consideration and approval.

He noted that there was a need to put in place the necessary infrastructure required for the actualisation of the goals and objectives of the nation’s space policy and programme.

The President urged the agency to engage in partnerships with other relevant stakeholders and the private sector to achieve its objectives.

He asked it to seek to explore useful collaboration with the private sector on how to best commercialise some of its output in furtherance of the government’s objectives.

“The present administration is committed to developing our society by engaging relevant human resources for the socio-economic improvement of our nation.

“We shall be steadfast in providing the required support towards the success of the space programme, as well as relevant resources needed for its growth and successful realisation of the mandates of the nation’s space agency.”

While commending NARSDA for the satellites already launched, the President charged its CEO, Dr Halilu Shaba, to do more.

“I am very proud of the strides we have achieved with the launch of NigeriaSat-1, NigeriaSat-2, Nigcomsat-1R, and NigeriaSat-X. Of tremendous interest to me is NigeriaSat-X which was designed and built to flight standards by our engineers and scientist.

“I expect you to drive your team towards the attainment of these goals which deepens your relevance in our national construct while inspiring millions of our youth to explore the opportunities in this field,” he told Shaba.

The NASRDA chief, on his part, updated the meeting on the status of the NigeriaSat-2 and the progress made on building and launching of a Synthetic Aperture Radar (Nigeria SAR-1), and on Optical Earth Observation Satellite (NigeriaSat-3).

He called for intensified funding of the agency’s activities in order to achieve the set objectives and gave a detailed briefing on NASRDA’s support to the military in the fight against terrorism.

No Adequate Satellite To Monitor Bandits, Says National Space Agency DG

Shaba also called for collaboration between the agency and security agencies in the country.

 

The National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) on Wednesday said inadequate satellite and other facilities affect monitoring of bandits and other criminal elements operating in the country.

The newly appointed Director-General of the Agency, Halilu Shaba disclosed this to journalists in Abuja after an interactive meeting with staff of the agency in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

Shaba said the bandits have become sophisticated in their operations and waves received by the agency from remote areas shows the bandits no longer use Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM) phones, but walkie-talkie.

“The Satellite is not static where the insurgency is taking place. That is why one satellite is not adequate. What Nigeria has there are some two satellites doing two different things.

“We have a High-Resolution imaging satellite and Medium Resolution imaging satellite. The activities of the bandits could be when the satellite was away from Nigerian borders, so that is why we are advocating for more satellites for Nigeria,” he said.

Shaba, therefore, called for collaboration between the agency and security agencies in the country in the area of information sharing, especially when planning to launch attacks on the criminal elements.

 

Nigeria Witnesses Partial Eclipse Of The Sun

Image of the Sun.A partial eclipse of the Sun has been witnessed on Sunday in Nigeria confirming the forecast by the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA).

Between the hours of 1:00pm to 16:00pm, local time, residents in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, experienced a flush of sunlight and mild darkness.

Some Abuja residents gathered at the NASRDA office in Abuja to experience the eclipse, which the agency had described as an astronomical phenomenon.

Searching The Skies

With their eyes searching the skies, students from different schools in Abuja, who were at the NASRDA office, could not hide their excitement.

The Director General of the agency, Dr. Saidu Mohammed, told reporters that the eclipse would not affect satellite communication.

He advised Nigerians to remain calm, as there was nothing mystical about it.

The eclipse, which occurred at exactly 1:03pm, local time, could only be seen through binoculars or a telescope by projecting the sun’s disc onto a sheet of card or paper.

Some people also used eclipse glasses which filter sunlight.