Promoting science and education in Africa.

New Generation Chemists Can Tackle Nigeria’s Big Challenges! ~ICCON Registrar

7 min read
Chemist Wilford Jwalshik, Registrar/CEO ICCON
ICCON Registrar/CEO, Chemist Wilford Jwalshik

It is glaring that our beloved country Nigeria is facing challenging times, even as most countries of the world struggle to recover after the pandemic.

In Nigeria, identifying our challenges is not a problem,  the herculean task is how to solve them!

Ask anyone our top seven (7) challenges in Nigeria, their list will likely show these:

(i) Insecurity (ii) Poverty/Unemployment (iii) Poor Healthcare System (iv) Poor Quality of Education (v) Inadequate Infrastructure & Electricity Supply (vi) Lack of Good Drinking Water (vii) Environmental Issues.

Although, many may tie everything to leadership, professionals have a role to play towards building a self reliant nation. This determines how relevant such profession is, not necessarily how the society tag them.

Interestingly, the Chemistry profession, if paid adequate attention to, can provide the needed solutions to these challenges!

Let’s get a clear understanding of the scope and opportunities of Chemistry as to better appreciate her relevance.

Generally, Chemistry is the study of the composition and properties of matter. It seems to explain what air, water, soil, plants, food, mineral ores, metals are made up of including nanoparticles and biochemical reactions in humans and other organisms.

Crude oil, gold and other solid minerals extraction/mining and refining, photosynthesis all involve Chemistry applications.

Chemistry is therefore, the bedrock of every sector of the economy: agriculture (agrochemistry), petroleum & energy (organic/petroleum chemistry), mines & steel (mineral chemistry, material science), ICT (material science), environment (environmental chemistry), health (biochemistry, pharmaceutical chemistry), water resources (water chemistry), education (chemistry education), commerce & industry (industrial chemistry), engineering & works (chemical engineering), textiles (polymer chemistry), etc.

Any Nation That Pays No Attention To Chemistry Cannot Be Self Reliant!  

Chartered Chemists at ICCON's Induction
Chartered Chemists at ICCON’s Induction

Let’s now take a closer look at how chemists are involved in fixing Nigeria’s big challenges!

(i) Tackling Insecurity: Nigerian Chemists in collaboration with the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) are at the forefront of Chemical Safety and Security awareness and enforcement. Forensic, analytical and nano-chemists are very useful in crime detection and intelligence gathering. It is clear that the war against insurgency can be better won through military intelligence (tactics) than physical combat.

(ii) In tackling Poverty and Unemployment: 

Chemists formulate fertilizers and pest control agents for food production. Food processing also requires chemistry application.

In a country where virtually every finished product ranging from sophisticated textiles to wooden toothpick, is being imported, establishment of chemical and allied industries becomes a top priority.

Unless chemists engage in extraction, mining and refining of solid minerals like gold, tin, iron, etc. harnessing our abundant natural resources to create wealth will be a mirage!

(iii) Effective Healthcare Systems:

Vaccines and drugs development, radiological and medical tests reagents, oxygen, disinfectants, sedatives, medical equipment, first aid materials, eye glasses, are all products of chemistry.

If you remove Chemistry applications from the health sector, all that will be left is preliminary health diagnosis with no solution! 

(iv) Chemistry Education:

Chemistry is central to Science Education, which is the foundation of industrial development. Our children must get it right from the beginning especially in acquiring practical knowledge. Our high school students should be exposed to practical training for making of basic chemical products like soaps and detergents, dye, paints; water treatment processes, glass blowing, electrochemical and electrical processes at an early stage.

(v) Infrastructure and Energy Supply:

Roads and bridges construction require cement, paints, metals, concrete, ceramics, rugs. roofing sheets, etc. are chemically based. Renewal energy sources, petrochemicals, petroleum and gas refining processes and production are deeply rooted in Chemistry.

(vi) Environmental and Water Resource Management:

Pollution control and enforcement of environmental regulations can only be effective with sound environmental analysis of air, water and soil samples, compared with standards and baseline data. Green Chemistry application also minimizes wastes generation, greenhouse gases, global warming and climate change. Chemical processes like recycling, bioremediation, battery technology are key elements in pollution abatement.

Provision of good water for drinking, domestic, laboratory and industrial processes pose serious challenge to developing countries like ours. Water treatment processes and packaging are primarily the job of chemists.

Unless, Chemists fully take up their responsibilities and are duly recognized by relevant authorities, nothing works!

Chemist in the Laboratory
A Chemist in a chemical factory.

Right Placement For Chemists Graduates, Now!

Ideally, chemistry graduates ought to be the ones with the brightest employment prospects in Nigeria yet only few chemists are engaged where they are truly required.

Let’s take a closer look at specific job opportunities for chemists in Nigeria:

(a) Government Ministries:

Federal/State Ministries of Science & Technology, Environment, Agriculture, Water Resources, Health, Mines & Steels Development, Education, Commerce & Industry, Interior and Defense.

(b) Government Departments/Agencies:

Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), National Foods, Drugs Administration & Control (NAFDAC), National Environmental Standards & Regulations Enforcement Agency (NESREA), National Drugs Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), National Oil Spills Detection & Response Agency (NOSDRA), National Atomic Energy Commission (NAEC), Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR).

State Environmental Protection Agencies (SEPAs), State Waste Management Agencies (WMAs), Nigerian Refineries & Petrochemical Companies, Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas (NLNG), Ajakouta Steel Mills, Nigerian Printing & Minting Company and several others.

(c) Research Institutions:

Raw Materials Research & Development Council (RMRDC), National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Industrial Development (NIPRID), Federal Institute for Industrial Research Oshodi (FIIRO), Project Research & Development Agency (PRODA), etc.

(d) Military & Security Agencies:

The.Military (Army, Navy and Air Force) and other Security Agencies including: The Police, Nigerian Security & Civil Defense Corps (NSCDC), Department of State Security (DSS), Economc and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), etc. all need Forensic, Nuclear/Atomic Chemists for intelligence gathering, chemical weapons detection or production.

(e) The Academia:

Educational institutions, at the moment, is the greatest employer of Chemists. Over 300 tertiary institutions and thousands of Secondary Schools (both public and private) absorb chemists as lecturers, teachers and laboratory technologists.

We cannot boost of having adequate Chemistry teachers in our schools, either. More institutions need chemists, still.

(f) The Chemical Industry:

The beauty of Chemistry in growing the economy is optimized in a functional chemical industry where chemists engage in the production of chemical products ranging from plastics, cosmetics (soaps, creams, perfumes, powder), foam, paints, glass/pet bottles, roofing materials, leather and textiles, food & beverages, cement, drugs, wines, etc.

Chemists are best handlers of chemicals
Chemists are best handlers of chemicals

(g) Chemicals Marketing & Laboratory Services:

There is a huge market for industrial and laboratory chemicals, science and medical equipment/reagents for graduate chemists. Incidentally, most investors in the chemical marketing sector, are non-chemists. Given proper orientation and investment capital, young chemists will thrive in local trade, importation and production of chemicals.

(h) Consultancy Services:

More experienced chemists need to dominate the consulting space as public analysts (foods, drugs, water, etc.), environmental consultants, industrial (product development) consultants, oil and gas consultants (corrosion, catalysis, bioremediation experts), etc.

(i) ICT, Media, Sports, Make-up Artistry:

Chemists are quite relevant in the emerging digital economy. Material scientists (chemists) are engaged in the production of silicon chips, plastic casing and other computer accessories. Computational chemistry and Artificial Intelligence (AI), Robotics, science (chemical) communications, journalism and publishing open new doors for ‘digital chemists’.

Most sporting facilities including: balls, booths, bats, jerseys, whistles and first aid materials as well as make-up products for beauticians are mainly chemical based products.

New Generation Chemists: Taking The Bold Step!

Since 1946 when Stephen Oluwole Awokoya (late Prof.) bagged his B.Sc. Chemistry from University of London, being the first graduate chemist, Nigeria has produced generations of chemists with various specialties.

It’s 50 years after Chemical Society of Nigeria (CSN) was formed since 1971 and 28 years since the establishment of Institute of Chartered Chemists of Nigeria (ICCON) in 1993; no doubt chemists have contributed immensely to the development of several sectors in Nigeria.

Prof. Moses N. Chendo led CSN National Excos
New CSN National Excos led by Prof. Moses Nkem Chendo (President, middle)

However the country is still facing challenges towards realizing economic stability. Here is where new generation chemists need to arise by taking the following bold steps!

i. Becoming Duly Registered (Chartered Chemists):

Unless all chemists are licensed (duly registered by ICCON (statutory government regulatory body), there cannot be effective monitoring and accountability in the profession. Over 50,000 chemists graduates have been trained in the past 50 years but less than 10% of chemists are chartered (officially registered as practising chemists in Nigeria). If 50% of chemists graduates do so, we will become a formidable force to reckon with among top Nigerian professionals!

ii. Taking Chemistry From Laboratory to Market Place!

Beyond exciting chemical research breakthroughs in our ivory towers, Nigerian chemists in the 21st century should endeavour to commercialize products developed from researches with economic values. ICCON is working out modalities with relevant stakeholders including CSN, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) to achieve this objective

iii. Effective Bonding-Strategic Alliance:

Chemists are encouraged to network among themselves and other related professionals to tackle big Nigeria’s challenges. For instance, ICCON/CSN are presently partnering with relevant Security authorities to curb growing insecurity problem in Nigeria particularly on Chemical Safety and Security.

We can achieve more where we team up with like minded professionals even at micro economic level for instance, two, three, five or more chemists can pool their intellectual and financial resources together to develop and commercialize a given chemical product say ‘medicinal soap’, table water, food spices/preservative or work together as ‘environmental consultants’, etc.

If we can all these right, in no distant time, chemistry profession, will not only be popular as a central science but become a major key player in fixing Nigeria’s challenges; repositioning the country as the industrial hub and economic power in Africa.

Register with ICCON today! Text your email address to: 08037761852 or

Read more:

Next ICCON 14th MCPD in Port-Harcourt


56 thoughts on “New Generation Chemists Can Tackle Nigeria’s Big Challenges! ~ICCON Registrar

  1. The role of chemists in the Nigerian Economical & security sector cannot be overemphasized.

  2. Have you ever thought about including a little bit more
    than just your articles? I mean, what you say is valuable
    and all. But imagine if you added some great photos or video
    clips to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with pics and videos, this blog could undeniably be one of
    the best in its field. Very good blog!

    Feel free to surf to my blog post: buy weed

  3. Αfter I initially left a ⅽomment Ӏ ѕeem to have clickⅼed
    thee -Noify mme whenn new commentѕ are addeԁ- checkbox and from
    now on every time a c᧐mment is adԁed I receive 4 emails with the same comment.
    Is there an easy method yߋu can remove me from
    that service? Many thanks!

    Feel free tto surf to my bloog ⲣost – selengkapnya disini

  4. I’m amazed, I have to admit. Seldom do I encounter a blog that’s equally educative and amusing, and let me tell you,
    you have hit the nail on the head. The problem is
    something too few folks are speaking intelligently about.
    Now i’m very happy I came across this during my hunt for something relating to this.

    Have a look at my site – Total Pure CBD Review

  5. Hmm it looks like your site ate my first comment (it was extremely long) so I guess I’ll just
    sum it up what I had written and say, I’m thoroughly
    enjoying your blog. I too am an aspiring blog writer but I’m
    still new to the whole thing. Do you have any points for rookie blog writers?
    I’d really appreciate it.

  6. I’m excited to discover this web site. I wanted to thank you for ones time for this particularly wonderful read!!
    I definitely appreciated every part of it and I have you saved as a favorite to check out new stuff on your website.

    Feel free to surf to my web blog ::

  7. Hi there, I discovered your blog by means of Google at the same time as searching for a related matter, your website got here up, it appears to be like good.
    I’ve bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.
    Hello there, simply was alert to your weblog through Google,
    and found that it’s really informative. I am gonna watch out for brussels.
    I’ll appreciate should you continue this in future. A lot of
    people will be benefited from your writing.

  8. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though
    you relied on the video to make your point. You clearly know what youre talking about, why throw away your intelligence on just posting videos
    to your site when you could be giving us something
    enlightening to read?

  9. Hi, Neat post. There is a problem with your website in internet explorer, may check this?
    IE nonetheless is the market leader and a large element of
    people will pass over your magnificent writing
    due to this problem.

  10. I’ve been browsing on-line more than three hours nowadays,
    but I never found any attention-grabbing article like yours.
    It’s lovely value sufficient for me. In my opinion, if all webmasters and bloggers made just right
    content as you probably did, the net might be much more useful than ever

  11. fantastic submit, very informative. I ponder why the other specialists of this sector don’t notice this.

    You should proceed your writing. I’m confident, you’ve a great readers’
    base already!

  12. Hello there! This blog post could not be written any better!

    Looking at this post reminds me of my previous roommate!
    He always kept preaching about this. I most certainly will send this post to him.

    Pretty sure he will have a great read. Thank you for sharing!

  13. Having read this I thought it was really enlightening.
    I appreciate you finding the time and effort to put this information together.
    I once again find myself personally spending a significant amount of
    time both reading and commenting. But so what, it was
    still worthwhile!

  14. Hey! This is my first comment here so I just
    wanted to give a quick shout out and tell you I
    really enjoy reading through your blog posts. Can you recommend
    any other blogs/websites/forums that cover the same topics?
    Thank you!

  15. Please let me know if you’re looking for a article writer for
    your blog. You have some really great posts and I think I would be a good
    asset. If you ever want to take some of the load
    off, I’d love to write some material for your blog in exchange for
    a link back to mine. Please blast me an e-mail if interested.
    Thank you!

  16. Pretty section of content. I just stumbled
    upon your website and in accession capital
    to assert that I acquire in fact enjoyed account your blog
    posts. Any way I will be subscribing to your
    augment and even I achievement you access consistently fast.

  17. You actually make it appear so easy with your presentation but I in finding this matter to be really something that I think I would by no means understand.
    It sort of feels too complicated and very huge for me. I am looking forward in your next put up, I will attempt to get the cling
    of it!

  18. Please let me know if you’re looking for a article writer for your site. You have some really great articles and I think I would be a good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load off, I’d absolutely love to write some articles for your blog in exchange for a link back to mine. Please blast me an email if interested. Regards!

  19. I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here.
    The sketch is tasteful, your authored material stylish.
    nonetheless, you command get bought an edginess over
    that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come more formerly again since exactly the same nearly very often inside case
    you shield this increase. cheap flights cheap flights

  20. Heya great blog! Does running a blog such as
    this require a large amount of work? I have absolutely no
    understanding of coding but I had been hoping to start my own blog soon. Anyways, should you have
    any suggestions or techniques for new blog owners please share.
    I know this is off subject however I simply
    needed to ask. Thanks a lot!

  21. Excellent beat ! I wish to apprentice whilst you amend your
    web site, how could i subscribe for a blog site? The account helped
    me a acceptable deal. I had been a little bit familiar of this your broadcast offered bright
    clear concept

  22. Thanks for the marvelous posting! I certainly enjoyed reading it, you
    could be a great author.I will be sure to bookmark your
    blog and may come back sometime soon. I want to encourage yourself
    to continue your great work, have a nice day!

  23. It’s awesome to pay a quick visit this web site and reading the views of all colleagues on the topic of this post, while I am also eager
    of getting experience.

  24. Have you ever considered about including a little bit more than just your articles?
    I mean, what you say is important and all. But imagine if you added some great images
    or videos to give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with pics and video clips, this blog could undeniably be one
    of the best in its niche. Amazing blog!

  25. Hello there! This post couldn’t be written any better! Reading this post reminds me of my good old room mate!
    He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this article to him.
    Pretty sure he will have a good read. Thanks for sharing!

  26. Hi there very cool site!! Guy .. Beautiful .. Amazing ..
    I will bookmark your blog and take the feeds additionally?

    I’m glad to search out so many useful information right here in the post, we need work out more strategies on this regard, thank
    you for sharing. . . . . .

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *