Nust ad­vo­cates sci­ence in place of vi­o­lent protests

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - National News - Nqo­bile Tshili Chron­i­cle Cor­re­spon­dent

THE coun­try can solve its eco­nomic prob­lems through sci­en­tific re­search in­stead of the ret­ro­gres­sive vi­o­lent protests, an of­fi­cial has said.

Na­tional Univer­sity of Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy (Nust) di­rec­tor of com­mu­ni­ca­tion and mar­ket­ing Mr Felix Moyo yes­ter­day said the coun­try has the brains that can trans­form its eco­nomic for­tunes if it fo­cuses on re­search.

He was speak­ing ahead of a five-day Re­search and In­tel­lec­tual Out­puts Sci­ence, Engi­neer­ing and Tech­nol­ogy (RIO-SET) Expo which starts to­day and ends on Satur­day at Nust.

Vice Pres­i­dent Phelekezela Mphoko is ex­pected to of­fi­cially open the expo on Fri­day.

Mr Moyo said the expo has at­tracted Gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials in­clud­ing the Min­is­ter of Higher and Ter­tiary Ed­u­ca­tion, Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy Devel­op­ment Pro­fes­sor Jonathan Moyo.

RIO-SET is an en­gage­ment of all the coun­try’s higher and ter­tiary in­sti­tu­tions who will be pre­sent­ing their re­search projects for the devel­op­ment of the coun­try.

Mr Moyo’s sen­ti­ments come at a time when the coun­try is ex­pe­ri­enc­ing vi­o­lent protests which an­a­lysts say do not pro­vide so­lu­tions to eco­nomic prob­lems be­dev­illing the coun­try.

“Coun­tries de­velop through re­search. I can name coun­tries that have done so but one coun­try that eas­ily comes to mind is Ger­many. When they were ex­pe­ri­enc­ing eco­nomic un­hap­pi­ness they fo­cused on sci­ence. They fo­cused on re­search engi­neer­ing, tech­nol­ogy and sci­ence and their econ­omy has never looked back. We be­lieve that Zim­babwe has the brains and this is the time to show­case it,” he said.

Mr Moyo said the expo, run­ning un­der the theme, “Grow­ing Zim­bab­wean Econ­omy through In­no­va­tion”, is a plat­form for re­searchers and aca­demics to put their heads to­gether for the devel­op­ment of the coun­try.

He said he was op­ti­mistic about the expo which is in its fifth year.

“These pa­pers that are pre­sented are re­search pa­pers where some­one re­searches on prob­lems af­fect­ing the peo­ple of Zim­babwe in com­par­i­son with other parts of the world. They will in­ter­ro­gate how prob­lems have been solved in other ar­eas,” Mr Moyo said.

He said the expo was an op­por­tu­nity for higher and ter­tiary in­sti­tu­tions to ca­pac­i­tate them­selves so that they can im­prove their low rank­ing among global learn­ing in­sti­tu­tions.

Last year, the Min­is­ter of Higher and Ter­tiary Ed­u­ca­tion, Sci­ence and Tech­nol­ogy Devel­op­ment, Prof Moyo, said the coun­try has use­less aca­demics who are fail­ing to pub­lish re­search projects that can con­trib­ute to the so­cio-eco­nomic devel­op­ment of the coun­try.

Prof Moyo said aca­demics’ fail­ure to re­search on sound projects has led to the coun­try’s in­sti­tu­tions fail­ing to make it into the top 50 uni­ver­si­ties in Africa list.

Mr Moyo said the crit­i­cisms from the Min­is­ter were con­struc­tive and have re­sulted in aca­demics in­tro­spect­ing.

He said 14 uni­ver­si­ties, 12 teach­ers col­leges, seven polytech­nic col­leges and the To­bacco Re­search Board are ex­pected to present their find­ings dur­ing the expo.

He said the expo is free and open to mem­bers of the pub­lic and the or­gan­is­ers are pro­vid­ing fuel to high schools who want their pupils to be part of the sci­ence ex­hi­bi­tion. — @nqot­shili

Mr Felix Moyo

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