[Press Release] Communication from the RUFORUM Executive Secretary

The Office of the Executive Secretary, Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) extends appreciation to the RUFORUM Board, the World Health Organisation and Africa Union Commission through the Africa Centre for Disease Control for the work you have done to help Africa cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. We also thankful to all other organisations including our National Governments for the work done towards managing the COVID-19 pandemic, and efforts towards economic recovery of the African continent.

The COVID-19 pandemic exposed key gaps in Africa’s Science capacity to respond to the COVID-19 and other global challenges and clearly showed the urgent need for Africa to make significant and sustained investment in Science, Technology and Innovation.

The RUFORUM Board thanks the Universities for the actions taken to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic including transitioning to the online learning and development of protocols and innovations to mitigate against COVID-19 and other related challenges. The RUFORUM Board calls for increased cooperation and collaboration among African Universities and other Actors for
collective action and mutual support to build capacity for Africa.

The RUFORUM Board takes note of the ongoing efforts and support by the Government of Benin towards hosting the Triennial Conference that is due to take place 6-10 December 2021 in Cotonou, Benin and calls upon the RUFORUM member Universities and other Actors to participate. To minimize physical contact, most events will be held virtually. Unlike the previous Conferences, students from outside Benin will participate virtually this year.

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