Use Technology To Fight Insurgency - FUTA Don
FUTA DON WANTS GOVERNMENT TO FULLY DEPLOY SATELLITE TECHNOLOGY TO COMBAT BANDITRY
An expert and Professor of Geological Remote Sensing, Yekini Anifowose, has identified application of Remote Sensing as a veritable tool that can give Nigeria the winning edge in the ongoing battle against insurgency and other forms of banditry. He stated this while delivering the 148th inaugural lecture of the Federal University of Technology, Akure ,FUTA on Tuesday 7th February, 2023 titled, “Eyes in The Sky; Exploring Earth’s Resources.” He said that war against insurgency and banditry can be won using Remote Sensing and Geoscience Information System, GIS provided there is political will. According to Professor Anifowose, “Satellite data are sine qua non in monitoring and subsequently combating the environmental and security challenges in Nigeria. Hence Nigeria’s decision to invest in satellite technology is not a white elephant project in view of spinoff benefits that are accruable.”
Speaking on the relevance of Remote Sensing to the Nigerian society, the don said Remote Sensing images can be analyzed, integrated and utilized in various applications like Hydrogeology, Structural geology, Mining Engineering, Road and Dam location/Alignment, environmental planning and hazard monitoring to help combat banditry, insurgency and occurrence of some natural disasters. He said since over 100 countries including Nigeria have satellite in space and Nigeria maintains collaboration with Algeria, China, Thailand and the U.K on a Disaster Monitoring Constellation (DMC), the country should take full advantage of this and deploy satellite technology in the fight against insurgency and other forms of criminality.
Anifowose added that the most common challenge to field work exercise in Nigeria in recent time is banditry and kidnapping and opined that if remote sensing is adequately applied at all levels, security challenges may become a thing of the past.
The lecturer said proper utilization of remote sensing could also help Nigeria to attain many of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the government. Anifowose said “since Remote Sensing is a veritable tool for studying, monitoring and sustainably managing Nigeria’s resources, it can be effectively utilized to provide solution to most of the challenges that face humanity through achieving many of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”
Anifowose said the relevance of Remote Sensing in Nigeria could be exemplified via the Niger Delta environment. Describing it as a home to many Oil companies with inshore and offshore activities that drive Nigeria’s economy, he stated that their activities keep wreaking havoc on the environmental ecosystem. According to him, this could be curtailed via early detection through the application of remote sensing. The Don disclosed that as human population increases all over the world, the need to explore and exploit the earth’s resources become imperative. He said the careless manner in which exploitation is taking place has led to environmental degradation on land, creeks and sea making a sizable part of the human population exposed to low quality life as hunger and deprivation set in through loss of source of livelihood.
The lecturer said when we raise up our eyes to look at the sky on a dark night some of the stars we see are actually satellites looking at the earth from hundreds of kilometers away. Professor Anifowose said that in order to help combat insecurity and other related challenges resulting from non-application of Remote Sensing the country must endeavor to invest in satellite technology for the development of the country’s economy and to ensure a sustainable environment.
He also postulated that Geospatial technology should be introduced into the Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics curricula of Primary and Secondary school levels as this will enable pupils to get quickly familiarized with location science.
In her address, the Chairman of the occasion and Vice Chancellor, Professor Adenike Oladiji, congratulated Professor Anifowose who also is the Dean, School of Earth and Mineral Sciences for distinguishing himself as a scholar of repute in his area of specialization. She called on the government and other relevant agencies to take to some of the recommendations of the lecturer, especially in tackling banditry and insurgency.