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Gulu University to Receive Covilyce-1 Funding Next Financial Year

Dr. Musenero says the fund for the herbal concoction has been included in next year’s financial budget pending appropriation from the Parliament.
Dr Monica Musenero, The Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation interacts with Gulu University scientists while touring the University's Multifunctional Laboratory on Thursday.

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Gulu University will receive funding from the government for Covilyce-1, a poly-herbal concoction developed for Covid-19 treatment in the next financial year. This was revealed by the Minister of Science, Technology, and Innovation Dr. Monica Musenero.

Dr. Musenero says the fund for the herbal concoction has been included in next year’s financial budget pending appropriation from the Parliament.  She was speaking to Uganda Radio Network on the sideline of her visit to Gulu University in Gulu City on Thursday.

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Her revelation follows nearly a year of the Government’s failure to release funding for conducting further research on the herbal remedy after President Museveni ordered the release of 3.7 Billion shillings.

This was after Dr. Alice Veronica Lamwaka, the lead inventor of Covilyce-1 along with the University Vice-Chancellor Prof. George Openjuru Ladaah met the President in July last year.

Dr. Musenero however says that part of the fund for the actual clinical trial of Covilyce-1 is available but notes that the researcher needs some funding to conduct a pre-clinical trial.

She says the Ministry has put out a call for a proposal for the University to apply for funding adding that if they qualify, they will use the fund for the pre-clinical trials until the release of 3.7 billion shillings.

“We have put out a call for proposals if they apply and they qualify, they should have some money to work with until the release of the other funding,” Says Dr. Musenero.

She lauded the University for its innovation in traditional medicine but notes that they are still stuck on breaking the barrier to commercializing their innovative ideas in the market.

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Dr. Lamwaka however says she feels frustrated with delays to fund the University’s innovation saying it shows a lack of seriousness by the government.

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She says due to delayed funding for the innovation, they are now stuck and unable to conduct preclinical trials for covilyce-1.

“We are supposed to go on with the preclinical trial but without funding, you can’t. We have very good facility and the human resource capacity is ok,” She says

The University scientists at the faculty of Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Studies (PharmBiotec) say Covilyce-1 produced from natural traditional herbs can cure covid-19 symptoms within 12 and 72 hours owing to anecdotal evidence.

Besides the covid-19 herbal concoction, the scientists claimed they have developed herbal remedies for the treatment of sickle cell, peptic ulcer, cancer, diabetes, hypertension, and Asthma.