Addis Symposium To Honor Achievements Of Norman BorlaugJuly 9th, 2010
A major international agricultural symposium will be held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on 13 and 14 July in honor of the extraordinary life and achievements of Nobel Laureate Dr Norman E Borlaug. Dr Borlaug, President of the Sasakawa Africa Association (SAA), died last September at the age of 95. The first Borlaug Symposium is being organized by SAA in association with Ethiopia’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, and is being funded by The Nippon Foundation.
Special tributes at the Symposium will be paid to Dr Borlaug by former US President Jimmy Carter and Yohei Sasakawa, Chairman of The Nippon Foundation. President Carter and Dr Borlaug, with Yohei Sasakawa’s father, Ryoichi Sasakawa, founded Sasakawa-Global 2000 (SG 2000) in 1986 as a partnership between SAA and the Global 2000 programme of the Carter Center in Atlanta. The keynote address at the symposium will be given by Dr Akinwumi Adesina, Vice President of AGRA (Alliance for A Green Revolution in Africa), on ‘a green revolution for Africa: fulfilling the Borlaug dream’. The two-day event will be closed by the former President of Mozambique, Joaquim Chissano.
The Symposium will be attended by ministers of agriculture and senior government officials from eight countries where the SAA has instigated field programmes, through SG 2000, including its current four focus countries – Ethiopia, Mali, Nigeria and Uganda. They will be joined by Vice Chancellors and Deans from agricultural universities across the continent as well as representatives of bilateral donor agencies, international organizations, private foundations, agribusinesses, farmers and politicians.
The Symposium will reflect the changing face of African agriculture. Presentations and discussions will concentrate on current realities and challenges, particularly those affecting smallholder farmers and the agricultural extension professionals who serve them. Special panel discussions will include subjects such as closing the yield gap; improving post harvest handling; and the challenges facing agricultural education.
Outcomes from the meeting will feed into finalizing new ten-year strategies for SAA and the Sasakawa Fund for Extension Education (SAFE), which focuses on building the skills of mid-career extensions in universities and agricultural institutions in nine African countries. --EthiopianJournal