The NEPAD SANBio participated at the Research and Intellectual Outputs-Science, Engineering and Technology (RIO-SET) under the theme “GROWING ZIMBABWE ECONOMY THROUGH INNOVATIONS” which was held in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe from 30 August to 3September 2016. RIO-SET annual event initiated by the Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development of Zimbabwe. The purpose of the expo was to recognize that no country has developed without utilizing the wealth of knowledge and wisdom produced by its citizens.
Furthermore, the RIO-SET is an initiative to showcase to the nation and indeed the Southern African region, the research outputs and intellectual prowess by Zimbabweans both at home and in the diaspora.
The Zimbabwe Vice-president Honourable Phelekezela Mphoko in his opening remarks invigorated scientists to develop technologies to control the FMD and to prioritize breeding of indigenous cattle as part of food security and also find alternatives to dangerous agriculture organophosphate insecticide chemicals such as Dimethoate (commonly known as Rogor) The animal diseases of major concern in Zimbabwe are Lumpy Skin (LSD), Anthrax (outbrea
ks occur very often), Pulpy kidney, Brucella, New Castle disease, Black quarter/leg, tick-borne disease, Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD).
The Chinhoyi University of Technology shared the same sentiments with the Vice-President by expressing interest to enrol students almost immediately on Lumpy Skin Diseases (LSD) and New Castle disease research programmes.
The Central Veterinary Laboratory also highlighted that is in pursuit of regional and continental status as Brucellosis Reference laboratory. Part of their strategy is to localize production of Brucella diagnostic reagents. The Central Veterinary Laboratory has small-scale production process for New castle disease vaccine (about 2000 doses) and their desire is to establish partnership to scale up the production process to appreciable industrial scale.
SANBio is currently funding the Food and Mouth Diseases project and SANBio livestock Node National Institute of Scientific and Industrial Research (NISIR) and University of Zambia (UNZA) in Zambia is engaging on indigenous cattle breeding. Read more about the indigenous cattle breeding.
The RIO-SET expo is intended to provide an ideal platform from which Zimbabwe can harness and channel the knowledge and wisdom developed by the nation’s institutions of higher learning, research and related institutions and Zimbabweans in the spread, towards the achievement of the country’s goals.
At the same time the expo provided a platform to showcase research and prototype products developed by Zimbabwe’s science, technology and innovation professionals as well as an opportunity for individuals and institutions to share their activities and achievements.
It also provided an opportunity for sharing knowledge, networking and collaboration by stakeholders in higher and tertiary education in Zimbabwe; Government and State agencies, industry and commerce, strategic regional and global bodies, local civil society networks, the public and higher and tertiary education institutions
The expo attracted participants from various institutions country wide including Higher and Tertiary Education sector, universities, polytechnics, teachers’ colleges, research institutions and centres, industry, business, organisations and secondary schools. education in Zimbabwe; Government and State agencies, industry and commerce, strategic regional and global bodies, local civil society networks, the public and higher and tertiary education institutions.
NEPAD - Southern Africa Network for Biosciences (SANBio) supports this initiative by showcasing the demand-driven biosciences innovations for improved livelihoods coming from the whole region.