Gambia: 'Science & Technology Is Key to Economic Development'

Basse — 'Science and technology is key to economic development, and the government of The Gambia through the leadership of President Jammeh is committed to the improvement of these twin fields,' says the governor of the Upper River Region (URR), Omar Khan.

Speaking recently at the Nasir Senior Secondary School in Basse during celebrations marking Science, Technology and Innovation Week, Governor Khan said the government's commitment to this cause is manifested in the declaration by President Jammeh, of 2012 as 'Year of Science, Technology and Innovation'. The declaration, he said, was meant to spur motivation in the quest of accelerating science and technological development in The Gambia.

He reaffirmed that the vision of the Gambian leader is to encourage and motivate Gambians to partake in the scientific and technological innovation ventures in order to accelerate the development of the nation. The declaration, he further said is also meant to stimulate efforts geared towards the attainment of the envisaged Vision 2020 blueprint.

However, the URR governor stressed that this is a very big task that requires accelerated scientific, innovative and technological activities at all levels of our development process. He reiterated that no nation can completely develop without committed, competent and hard working citizens.

While commending the Gambian leader for his visionary idea that aims at promoting the development of science and technology in the country, Khan described the theme that focuses on "science for food security and reduction of maternal mortality" as apt.

"We must not lose sight of the brilliant advancements in medical sciences and technology, the improving quality of the sanitation and environmental condition, massive reduction in illiteracy level, and the high birth rate, all of which would further affect population growth," Khan said.

He went on: "Suffice it to say that if the world's population out-grow the food production, except there are prompt and timely interventions in the forms of innovations in science and technology to boost food production and guarantee survival, the world may experience catastrophe of starvation that may devastate the entire world population".

Governor Khan went on to stress that there is the need for every country on the planet to start thinking about innovations in the sustainable use of land for sufficient food production and preservations. He again stated that President Jammeh's pronouncement was meant to inform all that our environments are full of sciences which if effectively utilized, would help to find solutions to our development challenges, as well as help in the attainment of sustainable economic and social growth, and progress.

"It is our collective strive in innovative change that can put us on the global map of development and not depending on outsiders to do it for us. If we start doing something collectively, we shall reach our ultimate objective of economic development," he concluded.

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