THE Research Staff Association (RSA) of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has called on the government to apply locally developed technologies of the council in the implementation of the Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) and other national programmes and projects.
It noted that a number of technologies developed by the CSIR had not been fully encouraged and used as expected, and pointed out that if that attitude was reversed and the technologies used in laudable initiatives like SADA, it would boost Ghana’s strides towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals.
SADA seeks to reduce the percentage of people living in poverty to less than 20 per cent by 2030 and transform the northern savannah into a breadbasket for the whole of Ghana.
The strategy focuses on the creation of a “forested and green north”, an area where farmers plant and reap the fruits of economic trees, while producing nutritious staple foods for domestic consumption and commercial purposes.
In a communiqué issued at the end of its 21st annual general meeting in Kumasi, the association further noted that the use of technologies of the CSIR would also encourage young scientists to remain with CSIR to ensure sustainability of harnessing science and technology for national development.
The communiqué also expressed dismay at the dwindling government funding for research.
It called for arrangements to pay researchers a percentage of their basic salaries as their professional allowance in line with what was paid to other institutions.
The communiqué also called for improved infrastructural facilities and equipment in all CSIR institutes to enable them to be abreast of the current state of research.
The three-day annual meeting of the RSA was on the theme, “Harnessing science and technology for national development”.
In his address at the opening ceremony, the National President of RSA of CSIR, Dr Joseph Ampofo, said science and technology education was critical to the development of the nation and expressed concern that many science students were shifting to business.
He, therefore, called for action to address the situation before it resulted in untold hardships for the nation.
The Director of the CSIR-Soil Research Institute, Dr A.B. Salifu, said the hard work of research scientists was recognised because they kept on course the nation’s agenda to use science and technology in spearheading its socio-economic agenda.
The Minister of Environment, Science and Technology, Ms Sherry Aryettey, gave the assurance that the government would do everything to motivate researchers to contribute their quota to national development.