Malawian National Council for Science and Technology (NCST) has joined hands with the African Union Development Agency – New Partnership for Africa Development (AUDA-NEPAD), the Science for Africa Foundation (SFA Foundation), and global allies to introduce Grand Challenges Malawi (GC Malawi).
On August 30, 2023, the Minister of Education, Hon. Madalitso Kambauwa-Wirima, inaugurated this groundbreaking initiative at the esteemed Bingu International Conference Centre (BICC). This landmark development marks Malawi as the sixth African country to join the Grand Challenges family, with Botswana, Ethiopia, Senegal, South Africa, and Rwanda already establishing this initiative.
Gift Kadzamira, Acting CEO of the Malawi National Commission for Science and Technology, highlighted the synchronicity of this initiative with Malawi's Roadmap for Development (Mw2063) and the National Research Agenda. GC Malawi aims to provide funding for Malawian scientists to collaborate with their African counterparts in tackling critical developmental challenges, not only within Malawi but also across the broader African landscape.
Prof. Tom Kariuki, CEO of the SFA Foundation, underscored the transformational potential of this endeavour, aligning with the belief that African innovators possess the ability to create lasting impacts on their communities and the world.
Ensuring the initiative's triumph relies on the fundamental principles of close collaboration and knowledge sharing among NCST Malawi, AUDA-NEPAD, and SFA Foundation. This emphasis was evident during a collaborative planning meeting in July. Prof. Aggrey Ambali, Senior Advisor for the Office of Science, Technology, and Innovation at AUDA-NEPAD, highlighted Grand Challenges' pivotal role in promoting innovative financing mechanisms for sustained support to science and technology throughout Africa.
With this momentous launch, Malawi embarks on an extraordinary journey aimed at igniting innovation, transcending boundaries, and championing science for the advancement of Africa and beyond.
Grand Challenges Malawi operates within the framework of the Grand Challenges model, offering seed and scale-up grants for exceptional solutions. This initiative has already successfully proliferated across various African nations through Grand Challenges Africa, fostering audacious innovation across the continent.
Article by Correspondent