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Board of Trustees Approves DG-led Growth Initiatives to Transform Agriculture in Africa – IITA

The Board of Trustees (BoT) of the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) has given a vote of confidence and commendation to the Institute’s management under the leadership of its Director-General, Dr Nteranya Sanginga for the eighth time.

President Olusegun Obasanjo Research Campus in Bukavu, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Photography: IITA

Board Chair, Dr Amos Namanga Ngongi, expressed great pleasure over the management and growth of IITA over the last eight years, and in particular, the vast array of agricultural research works currently being implemented by IITA in Africa, the report said.

Dr Sanginga was also appreciated by the Board for initiating the “Start Them Early Program” (STEPan intervention designed to take agribusiness studies to primary and secondary school students, engaging them in club participation, course work, and experimental learning.

The Board was also excited by the infrastructural development that will drive agricultural research to a higher level. One of these developments has been the recently inaugurated IITA Kalambo research station in Bukavu, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and its subsequent renaming as President Olusegun Obasanjo Research Campus on October 2019. The facility now features a first-class tissue culture lab for the multiplication of cassava, banana, cocoa, yam, and potato, according to the report.

Trustees were also highly impressed with the partnership and delivery efforts of the Institute that has led to successful collaborative efforts to tackle hunger and poverty on the continent, the BoT report noted.

In addition, the BoT gave kudos to the collaborative relationships IITA had formed with the Nelson Mandela University, the Tanzanian Government, and other national governments and institutions.

During the IITA 2019 annual meeting tagged: “Research for Development Week”, Dr Namanga Ngongi, while making an assessment, said that the quality of the presentations was highly commendable, and expressed delight that they came mainly from early to mid-career scientists. He stressed that the rigorous studies on impact conducted by IITA’s socioeconomic staff were impressive. The BoT chair expressed hope that IITA would reach the target of lifting 11 million out of poverty.


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