“I am greatly honoured to welcome you to the USAID Innovation Bazaar here at the Makerere University Innovation Lab. It is truly encouraging to see all of you in such big numbers.
This unique event has been organized by USAID in collaboration with Makerere University College of Health Sciences School of Public Health ResilientAfrica Network (RAN). We are grateful to USAID in Washington, the Mission here in Kampala Team and all the development partners for choosing to hold the Bazaar here.
Today’s gathering is bringing together a wide range of critical actors in scientific innovation. We have here today representatives from Government, Implementing Partners, researchers, business experts, policy makers, faculty, students, innovators and the community. Makerere University is privileged to lead such a big network.
The ResilientAfrica Network (RAN) brings together 20 African Universities in 16 countries. ResilientAfrica is the only African based development lab among 7 development labs under the Higher Education Solutions Network (HESN). Also most importantly Resilient Africa is proud to host the USAID Innovation Bazaar TODAY. Such an occasion is truly significant to Uganda as a developing country.
We very much appreciate the USAID Innovation Bazaar activities that are intended to bring together entrepreneurs and USAID partners while connecting innovative ideas with flagship programs in Uganda. This is in line with Makerere University’s mandate of teaching, research, innovation and service provision.
We are achieving these objectives through collaboration with ResilientAfrica Network (RAN) program. We value its focus and commitment to continuously sourcing, developing and scaling innovative technologies. We also appreciate its efforts to strengthen community resilience to shocks and stresses that arise from various disasters. Additionally, RAN is also catalyzing and incentivizing the development of solutions that will impact agricultural production and markets, livelihood diversification, post-harvest handling and financial inclusion.
We have come here today to celebrate the brilliant minds of the Innovators (and the community at large) behind the research and development of the innovations that address African challenges. Makerere University through projects like RAN is building on this research as well as on indigenous knowledge.
I look forward to the enlightening talks from entrepreneurs, the demonstrations of various innovations in action, and the matchmaking sessions between the innovators and partners. I am excited about the prospects of further working together to scale these solutions for the benefit of the wider community.
I thank the Government of Uganda for its support to the Education sector and specifically to Makerere University. I thank the development partners for their support in creating an enabling environment that nurtures research and innovation.
To the donors who have continuously supported the work of our hands, with us today, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), our commitment is to work above self and utilize all the funds availed for the benefit of the communities. As you can already see there is very good work in the pipeline; additional support is what we need to help us realize all the set objectives and to achieve even much more.
Once again, ladies and gentlemen, thank you for showing interest in this initiative towards more research and innovation and most importantly for organizing and implementing all the activities of the USAID Innovation Bazaar. Indeed I hope that this will become a regular event, perhaps annually, in the life and work of Makerere University and its partners.”