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African Union acknowledges one of our own
2012-01-23

 

Prof. Maryke Labuschagne
Photo: Hannes Pieterse

The African Union awarded an international award to Maryke Labuschagne, a professor in Plant Breeding at our Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences, for her contribution to science in Africa.

Prof. Labuschagne received the African Union Kwame Nkrumah Scientific award in the category Life Sciences – Continental level. This is the highest level of this prestigious award programme.

The African Union Commission is committed to ensure that science and technology contributes to sustainable development efforts. In 2008 the African Union Commission launched the prestigious African Union Scientific Award Programme. This programme was later renamed the African Union Kwame Nkrumah Scientific awards.

The programme is implemented at National level for young researchers, Regional level for women scientists and is open to all scientists on Continental level.

The Continental level is the highest level of the programme. The objective is to give out scientific awards to top African scientists for their scientific achievements, valuable discoveries and findings.

Prof. Labuschagne has been part of our university for the past 23 years. Over the last 20 years she has been involved in training and educating scientists in plant breeding all over Africa. Her work also entails the development of better cultivars to ensure food sustainability on the continent.

“I really did not expect to win this award. The criteria were really strict and one always sells yourself and your achievements short,” says Prof. Labuschagne.

With this award, Prof. Labuschagne also receives US $100 000 (about R 804 180) in prize money, which will be used to renovate her department’s lab facilities and provide bursaries.

The official award ceremony will be held on Saturday 28 January 2012 at the United Nations Conference Centre in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
 

 

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