President Hakainde Hichilema has thanked the Japanese government for providing resources worth K28 million towards the construction of the Science, Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education training center which will contribute to the country’s objective to increase interest in innovation and entrepreneurship among learners.
President Hichilema explained that investment in infrastructure development is key to enhance the development of an innovation society in education-industry linkages.
The Head of State expressed confidence that the education of Zambians is assured and secured in a bid to accelerate the enhancement of STEM education.
President Hichilema said this in a speech read on his behalf by the Minister of Education Douglas Siakalima at the Commissioning of the STEM education training center and the junior engineers, Technicians and Scientists (JETS) National fair in Lusaka.
He also urged other cooperating partners to join hands with government in supporting the development of relevant and appropriate human capital for national growth.
“This STEM center will provide opportunities to teachers and learners to effectively contribute to the development of the country through science, technology and innovations,” President Hichilema said.
The President also recognized the talent demonstrated by young people under the Junior Engineers, Technicians and Scientists (JETS) National fair innovations and inventions.
He noted the importance of JETs in providing solutions to local problems but stressed the need to develop the innovations into marketable products.
President Hichilema said that it was through pursuits that talents are discovered and the future scientists, engineers, inventors and entrepreneurs are created.
He challenged all Ministers to find ways of ensuring that those with talent and inclinations are not left behind.
Meanwhile, the Japanese government pledged its continued support towards enhancing the education sector in Zambia.
Japanese Ambassador to Zambia Mizuuchi Ryuta disclosed that his government was considering a new project worth 11.27 million dollars to further strengthen the STEM system across Zambia.
Mr. Ryuta explained that this will be channeled towards the construction of STEM schools at the secondary level and provision of teaching materials in science and mathematics including laboratory equipment.
“Let us hope that the Zambian education system will be significantly strengthen through the dedication of all stakeholders and with the work of the STEM training centre,” Mr. Ryuta noted.
He was speaking in a statement read on his behalf by Japanese Deputy Ambassador to Zambia Satoshi Ominato.
Meanwhile Minister of Technology and Science Felix Mutati acknowledged that in today’s world, international economic competitiveness is seen from prioritizing science, technology and innovation.
Mr. Mutati noted that through the JETs fair the Ministry of Education will identify innovative projects for support through the science and technology fund.
And Lusaka Central Member of parliament Mulambo Haimbe observed great potential among the young inventors who he said have a mindsets ring created that signify a seed for a better Zambia.
National Science Centre Director Benson Banda disclosed that the JETs fair has attracted participation of about 600 innovators from all the 10 provinces.
ZANIS reports that the Science Technology Council has partnered with the National Science Centre to develop winning innovation ideas into real products using the 2022-2023 funding cycle.