11 October 2007

Rwanda: Stability Spurs ICT, Says U.S. Scientist

Kigali — THE President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Prof. David Baltimore, has said that regional political stability is an effective vehicle for the enhancement of science and technology.

"I have heard all about the wonderful things in science and technology happening here. Rwanda has great opportunities here because of the stability. Countries in the region should strive to be stable so that to register the same success," Baltimore told the press shortly after his arrival at Kigali International airport on Wednesday.

Prof. Baltimore, a Nobel Prize Winner in Medicine and the President Emeritus and Professor of Biology in California Institute of Technology, expressed optimism that once Rwanda increases science training opportunities, it would not only become a regional Information Communication and Technology (ICT) hub but an international one.

Prof. Romain Murenzi, the Minister in the President's Office in charge of Science and Technology, said that Baltimore had to learn more about the special areas of focus in Rwanda in ICT development especially in health and education.

Murenzi added that Prof. Baltimore's request was aimed at studying how he can help identify areas where American Association for the Advancement of Science may be able to offer support.

"Prof Baltimore wants to see for himself the achievements that the country has registered in ICT," Murenzi said of the prominent international scientist.

Baltimore yesterday toured Kigali Health Institute (KHI) and Kigali Institute of Science and Technology (KIST). He later delivered a public lecture at King Faysal.

The lecture was telecasted to medical and biology students of the National University of Rwanda.

Prof. Baltimore is an American virologist who shared the Nobel Prize for Physiology in 1975 with Howard Temin and Renato Dulbecco.

He is particularly saluted for successfully conducting research that led to an understanding of the interaction between viruses and the genetic material of the cell.

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