Deputy Minister, Buti Manamela, Delivers Keynote Address at the African Nuclear Physics Conference

Deputy Minister, Buti Manamela, Delivers Keynote Address at the African Nuclear Physics Conference

Deputy Minister of Higher Education, Science, and Innovation, the Honourable Buti Manamela, delivered a keynote address at the African Nuclear Physics Conference (ANPC 2023).

In his keynote address, Mr Manamela reflected on the conference and the importance of improving the quality of research within the African continent. “While the African Nuclear Physics Conference has grown to become a vital platform for critical reflection and action in nuclear physics, of equal importance has been the role that the conference has played in profiling our capabilities in nuclear physics,” he said.

“This, I think, is important if we consider the fact that one of the enduring lessons that we’ve learnt from COVID-19 has been the need for Africa as a continent to prioritise the improvement of the quality of our research and the development of critical science infrastructure. We need to do this with the view to ensure that our response to the existential challenges that face humanity, such as epidemics, and climate change, is dictated by our own scientific capabilities as the African continent,” he continued.

Manamela appreciated that the ANPC was action-oriented, and that its final action items would be geared to inform future research areas for the nuclear physics community both in the country, continent and the world. “I hope that building on the action items from the previous conferences, this will help to move the work of nuclear physics. This is critical as we must ensure that the research that we do informs policy and legislation and, given our developmental context as a continent, our research must be geared towards achieving socio-economic impact,” he added.

Hosted by the iThemba Laboratory for Accelerator Based Sciences (NRF-iThemba LABS), the ANPC 2023 took place at the Kruger National Park, Mpumalanga from 29 November to 03 December 2023.

This was the third time since 2019 that Africa’s nuclear physics research community met for the ANPC. Their international colleagues also attended the conference where both African and international nuclear physics experts presented their recent research and findings. In addition, young researchers, including students and postdoctorals, presented their research to an international audience of experts.

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