Cabinet Secretary for Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries Mr. Felix Koskei has hailed Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT) for its role in promoting research, training, innovation and technology transfer.
In a speech read on his behalf by the Ministry’s Director of Engineering Services, Eng. Jasper Nkanya, when he presided over the official opening ceremony of this year’s JKUAT Annual Open Day, Friday, September 6, 2013 at the University’s Juja Main Campus, the Cabinet Secretary further lauded the university for “bringing together various stakeholders and experts to showcase their research outputs and innovations.”
While addressing a mammoth crowd that turned up at the university’s Graduation and Innovation Square, Mr Koskei reiterated that the hallmark of a great university lay “not only in its reputation, teaching staff, facilities, research outputs or its library, but the caliber of graduates and their contribution to the socioeconomic development of the country.”
He further underscored the centrality of science, technology and innovation as key components of the socio-economic pillars of the Kenya Vision 2030 and commended JKUAT for initiating ventures that have the “potential to spur small scale industries that are critical to the country’s wealth creation agenda saying these have been realized through the university’s establishment of the Nairobi Industrial and Technology Park at Juja. It is indeed through the industrial park that JKUAT is set to support the Jubilee government’s goal of providing laptops to primary schools in Kenya.
In her welcoming remarks, the Vice Chancellor made a passionate appeal to the Government through the Agriculture ministry “to look into ways of supporting JKUAT’s efforts of extending its extension and outreach activities and programmes to Kenyans by availing avenues to the university to enable it set bases for showcasing various technologies engineered at the varsity.
During the one day event that is in its forth year, industry players, students, prospective students, parents , industrialists, investors, SMEs farmers among others are afforded a rare opportunity to interact with researchers and innovators so as to get new ideas and products for infusion into the national production system and research.