Nigeria First (Abuja)

31 July 2006

Nigeria: 'Nigeria's Nuclear Technology for Peaceful Purposes'

Abuja — President Olusegun Obasanjo has declared that Nigeria's aspirations for the acquisition of nuclear technology are for peaceful applications that will aid the socio-economic development of the country.

Inaugurating the Board of the Nigeria Atomic Energy Commission (NAEC) in Abuja on July 31, the President also emphasized that Nigeria was "unequivocally committed to the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty.

The President described as "unfortunate" the inability of past administrations to inaugurate the Board of NAEC 30 years after it was established by Decree 46 of August 1976 during his tenure as military Head of State.

He said that with the inauguration, "NAEC will now be centrally placed to play its role for the eventual deployment of nuclear power plants for electricity generation, among other uses in Nigeria."

President Obasanjo is the chairman of the Board. Other members of the 10-man Board "which will serve as the vehicle mandated by law to promote, coordinate and streamline the implementation of the national nuclear energy programme," are: the Ministers of Science and Technology, Power and Steel, Defence, Finance, and Solid Minerals; the National Security Adviser (NSA); Special Adviser to the President on Energy, a nuclear physicist, Prof. Ibrahim Umar and the Director-General of NAEC.

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