Abuja, Nov. 20, 2018 Prof. Ratemo Mechieka, Chairman of African Scientific Research and Innovation Council (ASRIC), Abuja has urged participants at its four-day congress to develop frameworks to strengthen the science and technology sector in Africa.
Mechieka gave the advice on Wednesday in Abuja while briefing participants on modalities at ASRIC congress, entitled “ Freeing Africa from poverty, hunger and diseases.’’
He also urged NGOs, government establishments, academia, media stakeholders present at the occasion to interact and come up with ideas that could help achieve the theme of the congress.
“I call on everyone present here-academia, NGOs, private and government establishments and the media to exchange information and ideas that can address the challenges in the science and technology sector, especially in Africa.
“Let us all compliment and interact with each other in this congress, by coming up with frameworks and strategies that can help us in implementing the flagship projects of ASRIC,’’ he said.
He lamented the climate change pollution bedeviling African continent and called for participants contributions on how it could be addressed.
He said ways on funding from civil society, private and government donors are welcome to support the African Union Science and Technology Innovation Fund (ASTIF).
“Funding will help achieve the mandate of ASRIC to free the Africa from Poverty, hunger and diseases.’’
Also addressing the participants, Dr Ahmed Hamdy, Executive Director of African Union, Scientific Technical Research Commission (AU-STRC) said the congress was a free zone meeting for exchange for ideas.
He urged participants, mostly scientists in various fields of science, to come up with innovative ways in addressing science and technology challenges confronting Africa.
He expressed pleasure at the presence of government establishments at the congress, adding that the development would help in enacting and effecting policies that would advance the growth of science, technology and technology (STI).
Hamdy stressed the need for the congress to address challenges found at the grassroots where hunger, poverty and diseases were more prevalent.
“ The poor are more affected with effects of climate change, diseases and hunge, so the congress should come up with innovative ways of addressing the issues and make impact on them.
“ We need all the aspects of the scientific committees; from business scientists, environmental scientists, medical scientists, food scientists, energy scientist amongst other scientists in civil societies, private and government establishments.
“They should come together and enhance the development of STI sectors in Africa,’’ he said.
He noted that there was a need for commercialisation of STI by-products in Africa as it would help in addressing poverty through job creation.
He said the role and participation of African capitalists could not be overemphasised, adding that they were needed to champion and fund the growth of STI in Africa.
“ ASTIF is functional and science and technology cannot grow without us calling on industrialists, capitalists, financial institutions, government institutions, business communities for funding.
We need them to achieve the Africa we dream of,’’ he said.
NAN reports that not less than 150 scientists across African countries such as South Africa, Egypt, Kenya, Tunisia and Nigeria are attending the congress.
Over 40 papers, addressing various aspects of science such as environment, food, soil, public health, space, business and water will be presented by academics.
Edited by Dada Ahmed/Dada Ahmed (NAN)
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