NEPAD e-Alert: Advancing Science, Technology and Innovation in Africa

March 5, 2015Advancing Science, Technology and Innovation in Africa

“For Africa to realise socio-economic development and growth, we need to prioritise science, technology and innovation,” NEPAD Agency CEO, Dr Ibrahim Mayaki, said today. Dr Mayaki addressed Science and Technology experts during a joint meeting to prepare an implementation plan for the Science, Technology and Innovation Strategy for Africa 2024 (STISA 2024).

Science and Technology experts attending the meeting to discuss implementation plan for STISA 2024

Dr Mayaki underscored that “Africa should emphasise on the strategic role of technological innovation in addressing critical challenges such as food security, health, and education and, improving international competitiveness through trade of manufactured goods, and protecting the environment.”

Adopted at the 23rd Heads of State and Government Summit in 2014, STISA 2024 is a continental strategy which aims to respond to the demand for science, technology and innovation to impact across critical sectors of development. The vision forthis framework is to accelerate Africa’s transition to an innovation-led and knowledge based economy.

Prof Diran Makinde browsing through the Strategy during the meeting

In his presentation, Dr Martial De-Paul Ikounga, AUC Commissioner for Human Resources, Science and Technology re-iterated that “STISA fosters social transformation and economic competitiveness through human capital development, innovation, value addition, industrialisation and entrepreneurship.“ He emphasised in order for this tool to be effectively utilised, there was need for commitment from the countries to implement theproposals made in the strategy.

The Strategy suggests that Science, Technology and Innovation will help to strengthen the capacity of AU Member States to build the necessary infrastructure and train future generations of political, social, business and science leaders. This visionwill be achieved through increased investment in education, technical competences and training, as well as science, technology, research and innovation.

Dr Mayaki and Dr Martial De-Paul Ikounga leading the discussions on STISA 2024

Experts at the meeting agreed that Africa’s greatest assets are its people and that this resource has to be empowered with the necessary skills and African-led innovation. 

The meeting was attended by representatives from the African Union Commission, NEPAD Agency, Department of Health  (South Africa) , Department of Science and Technology (South Africa), Forum for Agriculture Research in Africa (FARA) and African Academy of Sciences. Discussions continue today in the North West province of South Africa.

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