Professor of pharmacology at the University of Maiduguri, Borno State, Isa Hussaini, has said that poor funding on the part of government is frustrating research efforts on cancer and other diseases in Nigeria.
Hussaini, who is known for his work on the use of local herbs in cancer therapy, said many of the research grants made available to scientists in the country were provided by international agencies.
The cancer researcher said it was high time Nigeria increased its investment in science while delivering a keynote lecture at the investiture of fellows into the Nigeria Academy of Pharmacy in Lagos.
Hussaini said, “Inadequate funding is still a big challenge for research and development in Nigeria, as well as lack of constant power supply and non-availability of reagents which we have to buy from the United States and the United Kingdom.
“We need more research grants in our country; it is not about the personnel but the tools to work with. All over the world, there are Nigerians who have distinguished themselves in the medicine.”
According to the don, Nigeria must focus on the impact of non-communicable diseases like cancer, which he says is the second leading cause of death.
Hussaini said, “A lot of the research grants in Nigeria are focused on deaths arising from preventable diseases like malaria and tuberculosis when we should really be funding ground-breaking research in cancer. We have seen fruitful evidence of the use of local herbs in the management of cancer in Nigeria. ”
Speaking at the investiture, the Academy’s President, Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi, described pharmacy as the field that has unlocked breakthrough in medicine especially the discovery of new drugs.
He urged the new fellows to uphold the tenets and belief of the profession at all times.
Adelusi-Adeluyi said, “The individuals we have inducted into our ranks are those with a strong passion for scientific research. These are tested professionals who appreciate the value of research in fast-tracking the social and economic progress of societies.”
Those inducted include the Director-General, Nigerian Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development, Prof. Karniyus Gamaniel, Prof. Herbert Coker; Dr. Ogori Taylor; Prof. MojisolaAdeyeye, Dr Teresa Pounds and Calixthus Okoruwa.
By: Bukola Adebayo
The Punch News
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