Senior Minister, Yaw Osafo-Maafo, yesterday joined management and executive directors of the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) of the University of Ghana (UG) to officially commission the new ultra-modern Noguchi Advanced Research Laboratories to enhance biomedical research of global health infectious diseases.
The grand opening of the laboratories which was performed by the Senior Minister, Mr Yaw Osafo-Maafo, on behalf of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, was graced by the Ministers of Health and Education, Japanese Ambassador, H.E. Tsitomu Himeno, Chief Representative of JICA, Mr Hirofuni Joshi, Vice Chancellor of University of Ghana, Prof. Ebenezer Oduro Owusu, among other dignitaries.
In his welcome address, the Director of NMIMR of the University of Ghana, Prof. Abraham K. Anand, stated that the government of Japan in 2016 approved a grant aid of JPY 2,285,000,000 in support of the construction of laboratories for infection diseases of the NMIMR at the University of Legion.
He indicated that the decision to establish the Noguchi Advanced Research Laboratories for infection diseases at NMIMR was promoted by the need to strengthen the capacity of the institute to enable it function effectively as a leading biomedical research institute in the West African sub-region.
He said global partners at the sixth Tokyo International Conference on Africa Development (TICADVI) conference in Nairobi, Kenya, agreed that the project should be undertaken to build resilience to emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases in the West African sub-region.
He indicated that the laboratories will help the institute to strengthen regional capacity for early detection and effective response to disease outbreaks including those emerging from highly pathogenic agents such as Ebola, HlV, HINI pandemic flu, Lassa fever and yellow fever.
Among others, Prof. Abang said the new laboratories will also enable the Institute to function effectively as a regional reference biomedical research institute for West Africa.
He added that the laboratories will further ensure strict adherence to safety protocols and highest standards for biomedical research, and assured his outfit’s commitment to continue to work as a team to provide a good environment’ for training the next generation of scientists.
He assured that the laboratories will strengthen the Institute’s capacity for tackling the biomedical research and training needs of Ghana and West Africa sub-region.
He stressed that the NMIMR and University of Ghana were grateful to the government of Ghana for the gesture.
For his part, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Prof. Ebenezer Oduro Owusu, stressed his outfit’s readiness to work with NMIMR to sustain global health gains through partnerships in biomedical research.
He called on the staff of NMIMR to work efficiently and effectively to provide reliable biomedical research for global infectious diseases.
Story: Freeman KORYEKPOR AWLESU
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