The International University of East Africa and the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the 8th of August to collaborate in research and training. Representing IUEA was the university Vice Chancellor, Prof. Emeka Akaezuwa accompanied by the university Resident Director, Amb. Hassan Alwi; the Chairman of the University Council, Amb. Moses Sebunya and the Deputy Vice Chancellor, Dr. Lakshmi Bhabhuu while representing NEMA, was the Authority’s Executive Director, Executive Akankwasah Bariga who was accompanied by the Chairperson of the NEMA Board.
NEMA choosing to partner with IUEA is reminiscent of when another environmental protection oganisation, the Climate Change Action East Africa (CCAEA) chose The International University of East Africa to champion the first-ever East African Food Security and Climate Change Symposium and Expo 2022. This cements IUEA even further as the quintessential institute with whom to partner in all things pertaining to environmental protection, research and training.
How does this Memorandum of Understanding aid research and training?
IUEA has extensive experience in research and would like to engage in collaborative training, research and innovations to deliver quality products and services so as to address and give solutions to environmental challenges– Said a communique released by NEMA after the signing
NEMA seeks to enlist IUEA’s exceptionally skilled personnel and unique proficiency in technology, innovation, finance, environment, agriculture and business, in the hopes of furthering its efforts in promoting natural resources management, environmental compliance and an eco-friendly economy approach to the environment in accordance with the National Environment Act, 2019. By leveraging the above resources, the national environmental protection agency seeks to bolster its research and training efforts to innovate competitive eco-friendly alternatives inline with the National Development Plan, Vision 2040.
Does IUEA have any environmental research and training programmes?
IUEA has an internationally accredited environmental science and management course which allows for even greater synergy with NEMA. Serendipitously for both organisations, IUEA’s environmental science degree course allows for greater experiential learning opportunities for faculty and students in solving existing real-world environmental issues while also furnishing NEMA with a competent and passionate human resource base. This not only buttresses NEMA’s research and training efforts but also grants internship opportunities that are sure to cultivate specially skilled individuals and thus vastly supporting Uganda in the realisation of its Vision 2040 development plan.
What is Uganda’s National Development Plan?
The authority wishes to engage IUEA to continuously improve research on the impact and contribution of the environment to the realisation of Uganda’s national development plan Vision 2040, the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through partnership, training, research and development.– Said a communique released by NEMA after the signing
NEMA seeks to better its research and training capabilities to aid the Government of the Republic of Uganda with the achievement of its National Development Plan, Vision 2040. After deliberating with other institutions, the Uganda National Planning Authority contrived this plan to address the persisting issues hindering Uganda’s socio-economic development such as:
- Ideological disorientation
- Weak Private Sector
- Underdeveloped human resources
- Inadequate infrastructure
- Small market
- Lack of industrialisation
- Underdeveloped service sector
- Underdevelopment of Agriculture
- Poor democracy
In this plan, the government intends to contend with these issues by harnessing the opportunities that surround the country. Some of these include:
- Oil and gas,
- ICT business
- Abundant labour force
- Geographical location and trade
- Water resources
As can be inferred, many of the above opportunities relate to IUEA’s faculties of Science and Technology, business (tourism in particular) and engineering. This not only affirms the decision to partner with IUEA but also the opportunities that await students of IUEA’s internationally accredited programmes.
What are the United Nations’ Sustainability Development Goals?
Uganda’s National Development plan, Vision 2040 was largely a byproduct of the UN’s Sustainability development Goals. These are the fundamental priorities of the UN as defined by its 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development . As a member nation, Uganda is saddled with the responsibility of striving to create products, services and strategies to better the quality of life through the reduction of deprivations. The greater portion of these goals relate to environmental conservation therefore NEMA, as Uganda’s environmental protection agency, has a crucial role in conducting economic and thorough research and training to ensure these goals come to fruition.
What are the terms of this Memorandum?
This memorandum enables IUEA to better provide a world-class education service that is founded on experiential learning whilst also allowing NEMA to make use of the institution’s resources. To this end, IUEA agreed to the following terms:
- Provide competent and qualified personnel, and students to ensure the effective implementation of joint projects
- Provide research base evidence to underpin environmental protection policy formulation, implementation and monitoring process
- Take on innovative research projects of importance to NEMA
- Allow for capacity building for NEMA in areas of available expertise
- To market research products and services in order to increase the uptake and adoption and promote local innovations and solutions for the environment as a means of aiding the national development agenda