ED COMSATS briefs African leaders of initiatives aiming for sustainable growth


Zubair Qureshi

Executive Director Commission on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development in the South (COMSATS) Dr S M Junaid Zaidi highlighted the significance of promoting greater collaboration with countries in Africa and underscored the need to increase COMSATS’membership in the continent.
While addressing the a high level meeting at Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on the sidelines of the African Union (AU) Summit Meeting, Dr Zaidi informed that COMSATS had initiated several programmesin capacity building, grant of scholarships, assisting in establishing S&T-related interventions in member countries.
According to a press release issued here Sunday, Dr Junaid Zaidi also highlighted the new initiatives taken by COMSATS in the areas of climate change, sustainable development and fostering partnerships with the United Nations, Commonwealth, European Commission, and international and regional organizations in addressing developmental challenges.
Heading COMSATS’ body that represents COMSATS’ International Centres of Excellence, Prof Ashraf Shaalan briefed the participants about the activities of COMSATS Coordinating Council, especially in capacity-building in ICTs, renewable energy, agriculture, food security, biotechnology, material sciences, natural products sciences and climate change, especially through institutional arrangements such as. Ambassador Shahid Kamal briefed the meeting on the new initiative of establishing COMSATS’ Centre for Climate and Sustainability (CCCS), in which 15 COMSATS’ member countries have joined the CCCS network.
Earlier, President of Ghana and Chairperson of the COMSATS Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo considered the work of the organization important for application of science and technology for the development of Africa and invited more African countries to join COMSATS’ Commission.
The high-profile attendance of the meeting included, Muhammadu Buhari, President of Nigeria; IsatouTouray, Vice President of Gambia; Dr. Elioda Tumwesigye, Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Uganda; Patrick ACHI, Minister / Secretary General to the President, Republic of Ivory Cost; Deputy Chief Secretary in the office of the President, Zimbabwe; Foreign Ministers from Nigeria, Ghana; Minister of Trade, Ghana; Minister of Interior, Ghana; and Dr. Eugene Owusu, Special Advisor to the President of SDGs, Ghana.
Some of COMSATS’ close associates and senior officials from Egypt, Turkey and Pakistan that were present on the occasion included: Dr. S. M. Junaid Zaidi, Executive Director COMSATS; Prof. Ashraf Shaalan, Chairperson COMSATS Coordinating Council, Egypt; Prof. Dr. OrkunHasekioglu, Advisor to President, Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK), Ankara, Republic of Turkey; Ambassador Shahid Kamal, Advisor COMSATS and Mr. Nisar Ahmad, Deputy Director COMSATS.
The Meeting was held to, inter alia, sensitize the participants aboutCOMSATS’ activities in promoting science and technology for economic and social development of its member states, various programmes undertaken by COMSATS Coordinating Council, developments on COMSATS Centre for Climate and Sustainability, as well as encourage participation in the upcoming Accra Forum on Science and Technology for Sustainable Development.