The Ambassador of The Peoples’ Republic of China to Kenya, His Excellency Liu Xianfa has lauded the research and technological innovations being undertaken by JKUAT in collaboration with researchers from his country.
Addressing JKUAT staff when he visited the Sino-Africa Joint Research Centre in Kenya project at the University’s Main Campus in Juja, Friday May 29, 2015, the Ambassador noted that development in any country was only possible through meticulous research and technological innovations, a fete he said; was being harnessed at JKUAT because of its well designed programmes.
“It was because of JKUAT’s uniqueness that this project, the first of its kind outside The People’s Republic of China was initiated,” he told the gathering which included the Vice Chancellor Prof. Mabel Imbuga. Mr. Xianfa said he was confident similar projects would be replicated to other parts of Africa after JKUAT‘s successful completion of the project.
The site located within Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology will be the host of a multimillion shillings Botanical Garden and the Sino-African Biodiversity Research Center. It covers 16.23 hectare with an approximate floor area of 4300m2.
The botanical garden which is expected to be completed in 16 months will be based on 7 thematic gardens, among them; an African garden, medicinal garden, orchard garden and an Asian exotic garden. The aim of these gardens is to create a wholesome recreation center for the communities around JKUAT and Kenya.
In her remarks, Prof Imbuga appreciated the considerable progress that has been achieved in the initial stages of the project’s construction and thanked the Peoples’ Republic of China, the Chinese Academy of Science, Wohan Botanical Garden and the Shanghai Construction Group (SCG) for their continued support.
Echoing the words of the ambassador, Prof Imbuga said JKUAT recognised the urgent need for conservation of biodiversity which formed a basis for sustainable national development making the project one of the institution’s vision 2030 projects.
“Upon completion, the project is expected to be the hub of Sino-African cooperation in biodiversity-related research,” said Prof. Imbuga, adding that the modern laboratories to be set up in the research centre would boost the efforts of JKUAT researchers in the application of scientific research and innovation for solving the challenges facing humanity.
Mr. Evans Mugoya Atambo from the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology assured the collaborators of the project that the ministry would give the project the support it required to ensure the success of the project.
The meeting was also addressed by the General Manager, SCG, Eng. Zheng Lei and Director of Sino-Africa Joint Research Center Project Prof. Robert Gituru. In attendance were Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic Affairs) Prof. Romanus Odhiambo, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Administration) Prof. Victoria Ngumi, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Finance) Prof. Otoki Moirongo, the Principal of College of Applied Sciences, Prof. David Mulati, Director, Institute of Biotechnology Research, Prof. Aggrey Nyende and Chinese Embassy Official, Han Chun Lin.