The Rector of Kigali Institute of Education (KIE), Prof. George K. Njoroge, has called on the government and the private sector to invest in science and technology saying that it will generally spur development.
Njoroge made the call at the weekend during the World Science Day celebrations at the institute.
The day held under the theme ‘Chemistry a Key to Sustainable Development’ was organised by the Ministry of Education.
“One of the ways of promoting science and technology in this nation is to ensure that the funding for research is increased because you cannot talk about research without investing in it and it’s in this regard that I urge all stakeholders to lay strategies on investing in this area because it’s crucial to socio-economic transformation of this country,” Prof. Njoroge said.
He urged the private sector to invest in research in the area of science and technology.
According to Prof Njoroge, currently research in Africa is dominated by South Africa, Nigeria and Egypt, saying that there is a need for all African countries to give priority to the research.
“I believe the government of Rwanda has the will to promote science and technology but there is a need for partnerships,” Prof. Njoroge said.
He noted that recognition of World Science Day helps highlight to the population the importance of science and how they can come on board.
In an interview with The New Times, Dr. Marie Christine Gasingirwa, the Director General for Science, Technology and Research in the Ministry of Education, said that one of the government’s strategies to attain Vision 2020 is through the promotion of science and technology.
“The government intends to change our nation from being an agriculture-based economy into a knowledge-based economy and that’s why the Ministry is providing science equipment to all levels of education from primary up to university,” Dr Gasingirwa said.
Lack of qualified people is one of the major challenges that are still hindering the promotion of science in the country, according to Gasingirwa.
She said that the country has got many people who would wish to invest in the science sector but lack skilled labour.
Dr Gasingirwa said that under the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), it has been agreed that every country should allocate at least one per cent of the national budget to research as a way of promoting science and technology.
A group of over 20 local scientists from across the country in their respective fields showcased some of the products they have managed to produce through their science skills and knowledge.
Source: All Africa.Com – 19 March 2012