According to the Vice chancellor Makerere University Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe its now two year’s government providing 30 billion shillings each financial year to facilitate research and negotiations are on to see that this fund is increased to at least 50 billion.
The Vice Chancellor of Makerere University, Prof. Barnabas
Nawangwe has said they need more funding from government to cater for research.
He says despite government giving them 30 billion per financial year
they would need over 100 billion.
Since 2019 government has been giving Makerere
University funds to invest in research that can help in solving some of the challenges
that the country is facing especially job creation.
According to Prof. Nawangwe says for the past two financial years the government has been providing 30
billion shillings to facilitate research. But he added that negotiations
are on going to see that this fund is increased to at least 50 billion.
He explains that as a university they receive a
number of applications that what to research and come up with new innovations but
they are always limited by the meagre resources provided.
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Prof. Nawangwe said this today while launching an Automatic communal water
pump that is made to use a foot switch rather than hand for pumping water to
reduce the spread of COVID-19. He said Makerere University has the potential to change and
transform the economy especially now that the population is exploding.
The launched automation will focus on providing
water to the communities with bore holes but without using hands to pump it as
it has been.
According to Prof. Nawangwe another innovation will be
carried out to focus on the quality of water pumped by the new machine but now
this will help to reduce on the time that people spend on bore holes fetching
water and also eliminate the spread of COVID-19.
He says that the technology can also be used
for irrigation purposes which is still a challenge to the agriculture sector
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Meanwhile, Dr. Nicholas Kiggundu from the College
of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences who led the team that carried out the
research innovation notes that they are targeting the 67% of the population
that still get water from the bore holes and shallow wells across the country.
He adds that they have managed to complete their research
working together with the communities that are beneficiaries of the project,
noting that they started with Mukono and Buvuma islands.
According to Dr. Kiggundu they are planning to embark
on the process of registering the patent intellectual rights and later can be
in position to negotiate with the private sector for multiplier production with
a license issued by the Makerere University.
The machine is made to provide an automated
support to the communal hand water pump and it is made of a solar panel, mortal
and an inverter and a foot switch.