The National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) and The National Technology Business Council (NTBC) have awarded funding to six successful applicants of the Strategic Research Fund and seven under the Technology Business Development Fund.
Officiating at the awards ceremony at Raddison Blu Hotel, Ministry of Higher Education Permanent Secretary (PS) Kayula Siame stressed that government recognises research and innovation as critical in the country’s development agenda and that they are instrumental in the improvement of the quality and quantity of production of goods and services.
The PS also reaffirmed government’s support to research and innovation, as enshrined in the National Science, Technology and Innovation Policy of 2020.
“Research and innovation is expected to play a critical roles in the diversification process and in the exploration of opportunities that will enhance the productive capacities of various sectors of the economy,” Mrs Siame said.
She appealed to the recipients of the Strategic Research Fund (SRF) and the Technology Business Development Fund (TBDF) grants, to utilise the resource prudently.
“I make an earnest appeal to the recipients of the grants to ensure that their projects succeed and contribute to the socio-economic development of the country,” Mrs Siame urged.
Speaking at the awards ceremony, NTBC Chief Executive Officer Chitundu Kasase applauded the Ministry of Higher Education for investing in research innovation and that the awards have been undergoing refinement since their inception.
Dr Kasase noted that the awards have been developed with response to the country developmental agenda.
“It is the first time the NSTC and the NTBC are jointly awarding these grants and it is gratifying to note that the awards have undergone various developments to make them more responsive to the country’s developmental agenda,” Dr Kasase Said.
And one of the recipients of the Strategic Research Fund Cephas Sialubanje thanked the Ministry of Higher Education for the grant and commended government for showing research interest.
Dr Sialubanje who has been awarded a grant to undertake research to assess the long term effects of the coronavirus disease on survivors in Zambia explained that the study will help gather evidence of what happens in the immediate, intermediate and long-term to COVID-19 survivors in Zambia.
“If we understand the effects of the coronavirus disease with respect to viral load and strain on survivors, we can be able to advise on clinical care,” he explained.
Over K4 million has been disbursed for the seven successful projects under the Strategic Research Fund and over K 2.5 million for the 6 projects selected under the Technology Business Development Fund, through the National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) and the National Technology Business Council (NTBC).