The Nigerian Meteorological Agency, NiMet, is to establish meteorological infrastructure in 34 universities across the country in the first phase.
This is in furtherance of its target to increase the network of meteorological stations across the country and boost its data collection.
This was disclosed by the Director-General/CEO of NiMet, Prof. Sani Abubakar Mashi when he paid a courtesy visit to the Executive Secretary of the National Universities Commission, NUC, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, recently in Abuja.
Prof. Mashi said that NiMet has embarked on an aggressive programme to massively expand the network of meteorological stations in the country to about 1000 by December 2017. He disclosed that one of the strategies NiMet will employ to achieve this is to partner with Nigerian universities. “Part of the things we said we would do is to see how we can extend our services to the Nigerian universities”, he explained.
Speaking further, Prof. Mashi revealed that NiMet carried out an independent assessment of the universities and looked at the existing meteorological stations the universities maintained. He noted that one of the things that is missing is the linkage between the universities and the agency.
He stressed that NiMet has the expertise and knows what should be in place, while the universities have the capacity to teach, but may not have the technical competence to know the best equipment for the best results. “We feel that what we need to do, we need to come up with a way to help the universities get their infrastructure upgraded”, he said.
Prof. Mashi, who described the partnership with the universities as a win-win situation, explained that once the meteorological stations are upgraded, they would start generating data, thus expanding the agency’s network of stations, because the universities’ infrastructure has been upgraded.
In his response, the Executive Secretary of NUC, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed congratulated the Director-General and assured him that the commission will fully support this initiative and talk to the Vice Chancellors about it. “It is a very important thing you are doing and I want to assure you of our full support and full cooperation, and I hope by next year you would cover the entire universities in the country and then polytechnics and colleges of education”, he said