Environment Science and Technology minister designate has attributed Ghana’s low level of development to the lack of investment in science and technology.
Dr Kwabena Frimpong Boateng told members of the Appointments Committee of Parliament, Thursday, the difference between developed countries and the third world or developing countries is that the former invests more in technology.
“The poverty gap is really a technology gap. If we bridge the technology gap we may be on our way to solving our poverty situation,” he stated.
The nominee is seeking approval from the committee members to begin a new career as a minister of state in a sector so crucial to the development of the country.
Prof Frimpong Boateng stated that Science and technology attends every area of national life and until deliberate steps are taken to harness the benefits it comes with the country will lag behind.
He was answering a question about how he intends to use Science and Technology to help develop the country and how he would assist Apostle Kojo Safo in his car manufacturing enterprise if he is approved as a Minister.
Prof Frimpong Boateng said there is the need to create a “critical mass” of scientists throughout the value chain of the science and technology sector.
He stated that despite the achievements and innovations of Apostle Kojo Safo, he cannot do everything all by himself.
He would love that the country should invest in the training of scientists, some of whom will be able to manufacture, rim, bolts and nuts, and other technological parts needed to manufacture a car.
He does not understand why the Kantanka Car manufacturer should be made to develop everything by himself.
While supporting the need to invest in science and technology the major issue has been how to raise funding for the projects.
One of the MPs asked Dr Boateng how he intends to raise funding for the many laudable projects he talked about.
Dr Frimpong Boateng said at the moment the amount of money invested in research, Science and Technology is 0.25% of GDP which is miserably low for any meaningful development of the sector.
He said he will lobby for more investment into the sector. He said if the resources invested in the sector is at least one per cent of GDP it will be a good starting point. He is however looking a 2.5% increase in funding to the sector.
The Minister designate is also worried about the level of encroachment on lands owned by the statutory institutions like the CSIR and public other health institutions.
He said when he is given the nod he will take immediate steps to build walls around lands owned by some of these institutions.
As Chief Executive of the Korle-bu Teaching Hospital, Dr Frimpong Boateng was credited with solving, at least partially the incidence of encroachment on lands owned by the Teaching Hospital.
He is ready to replicate same if given the nod.