Information Directorate, Youyi Building, Sierra Leone, and Monday 16th July, 2018 -TU Delft University is one of Netherlands oldest Technical institutions involved in research projects on technology focusing on Sub Sahara Countries and Some Parts of Asia on Health, Energy, Sustainable Water, and several other life saving and improvement Projects.
The University on Monday 16th July held a round table meeting with sector ministries at the conference room of the information ministry 8th floor Youyi Building Freetown.
Speaking at the meeting, the Hon. Minister of Information and Communications Mohamed Rado Swarray said the meeting was born out of series of exploration discussions with Antoinette Mutesa from Netherlands who was introduced to the Ministry of Information and communications few months ago.
He said the issues discussed resolved that there were a lot of things the TU Delft University in Netherlands and Sierra Leone’s ministry of information can do together with various other ministries.
He noted that, the government of Sierra Leone treats the issues to be discussed in the meeting seriously that is why almost all other ministers attended to show how much importance is placed on the discussions to be held.
He said the conversations bordered largely on the development of an innovation hub in order to tackle youth unemployment, and to provide the best opportunity for the people of Sierra Leone to benefit from digital divide, particularly ICT transformation. As a government the Minister emphasized that, they want to be able to do so many things in addressing certain challenges adding that, TU Delft came to support the government in addressing some of those key critical challenges in our various sectors.
He maintained that, though Sierra Leone has got traditional partners but this is an opportunity to creep into new countries.
He explained that TU Delft will be supporting Sierra Leone to build an innovation hub that will afford a lot of other opportunities stating that ,TU Delft will not be doing it all by themselves thus; they will be bringing on board the World Bank and other ministries. The Hon. Minister furthered that, TU Delft have a record of successfully embarking on such project and producing results around the world, for which they have established ties with the World Bank and Islamic development bank to deliver to our country an innovation hub among other things.
As a government, he went on, they are aware that a serious innovation hub of the 21century will need water, high speed ICT service, and opportunities for garbage collection and disposal or recycling if possible. He said Sierra Leone is in competition with other countries in the sub region on building an innovation hub but however Netherlands have consented to working with our country.
Conclusively he said , discussions in the two day engagement will be focusing on the way forward on how the two parties can work together in developing an MOU for the development of a cooperate framework for the implementation of the Project.
A cross section of Ministries representatives and the TU Delft team
Giving a background of TU Delft, the Team Leader for TU Delft University - chairman Delft Global Initiative Prof. Nick Van de Giessen said TU Delft is the largest and oldest technical University in the Netherland and the institution that focuses on “science for the benefit of people, all people worldwide”. He added that, they are a platform, portal, and booster of science and technology.
He pointed out that the University houses several faculties including, civil Engineering, ICT, water, Architecture, Physics, Health amongst others. He continued that, they deal with frugal innovation which is affordable, simple, sustainable and reliable. He disclosed that, they specifically focus on health care engineering, Energy, Urbanization, water and Disaster resilience and response. As an Institution he said they concentrate their operations in sub Sahara Africa and part of Asia adding that, they are involved in researches and sustainable water projects and as a result have created a lot of solutions around the world.
He said TU Delft support countries to save lives by improving the level of technology with some amount of speed.
He maintained that as a University, with the kind of technology they have, they thought it fit to see how agriculture is doing in Sierra Leone, what type of crops that are grown and the technology used.
He said, there are a lot of things that can be done to improve that area citing the setting up of an innovation hub as one. He revealed that, they are in Sierra Leone with open hands ready to work with the country on several opportunities, noting that though everybody may be thinking of where to get resources but however, the ideas are the most important resources he said, will come later.
The meeting is expected to end on Tuesday 17th July 2018 where the TU Delft University will sign an MOU with the Government of Sierra Leone on building an innovation Hub.
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