By Cecilia Ologunagba
Some panelists at the on-going three-day International Statistical Conference in Lagos have called on the Federal Government to invest and fund research to enhance inclusive development in the country.
The panelists made the call at plenary session on the topic “Guide to Statistical Research Design, Proposal Development and Project Execution.’’
The panelists observed that the level of poor funding for research in the universities had made it difficult for professors to support their students.
Prof. Peter Osanaiye of Department of Statistics, University of Ilorin, said that the Federal Government should be able to fund knowledge-based projects.
Osainaye said that professors usually have so many students under them for supervision that they were supposed to be supporting with grants.
He said government should increase funding for research in university so that they (professors) would be able to support their students with research grants.
The professor, however, called for sponsorship from corporate organisations to help professors so that they could assist their research students.
Similarly, Prof. Joy Nwabueze of Department of Statistics, Micheal Opara University Umudike, Abia, called on the Federal Government to allocate special funding for professors.
Nwabueze said that research students enjoyed grants from professors because their governments had made provision for such funds.
She said they might not be able to support good proposals because of lack of funding.
On his part, Prof. Timothy Bamiduro of Department of Statistics, University of Ibadan, urged the Federal Government to fund research carried out by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS)
He said the bureau could not effectively carry out important surveys because of funding as they used to do some years back.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that no fewer than 140 scientific papers were presented at the conference.
One of the papers focused on “Contraceptive usage among ever married women in urban and rural Nigeria’’, jointly presented by Mangbon Torden and Turman Henry, both researchers from NBS.
The scope of the paper was on the level of contraceptive usage in the rural and urban areas.
The researchers used five variables in carrying out the research – level of education, wealth index, mass media, husband consent and religion.
One of the key findings of the research was that the level of education of the women had influenced their usage of contraceptives, both those living in rural and urban areas.
NAN reports that the conference is being organised in collaboration with the Lagos State Bureau of Statistics and the state Ministry of Economic Planning and Budget.
It created forum for exchange of best practices among participating national and international statistical offices.
Representatives of Ethiopian Statistical Association, Botswana Statistical Association and some others in Africa attended the conference (NAN)