The conference continued today at the ICC in Durban, South Africa.
Here are highlights from Day 4:
The morning started with MUT’s Research Colloquium. Professor Kebogile Mokwena, HOD, Public Health, Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University began the day with an insightful talk on ‘Health Literacy as a tool for community empowerment.’
She emphasised that it was important to create a supportive environment. ‘Health literate elderly people have better outcomes and live longer,’ noted Professor Mokwena.
The next session presented by MUT Faculty of Natural Sciences. Professor Monde Ntwasa, Professor of Biotechnology at UNISA was the chair.
We heard from Ms Nokuthula Thulisile Sithole from MUT all about the potential use of organic fertilizers to enchance seed germination of green bean. She stated that there was insufficient information on organic fertilizers. ‘Sub-Saharan Africa is a region that is food insecure,’ said Ms Sithole.
Dr Makhosi Buthelezi of MUT revealed studies into the groundnut leafminer, a pest that is found in Africa, Australia and India. ‘This pest has established itself in different areas of South Africa and it can survive humidity and frost,’ said Dr Buthelezi.
‘This pest threatens commercial production,’ warned Dr Buthelezi. She went on to note that these pests in Africa, Australia and India are genetically related.
Prospective design of New Chemical Entities as prostate and breast cancer therapeutics was the next topic presented by Dr Njabulo Gumede of MUT.
‘It is important to look at alternatives,’ said Dr Gumede.
In a Q & A session Ms Sithole noted that ‘Plants from the same family tend to behave the same way.’
The next session brought us a paper by Dr Sikwela Mpuzu of MUT all about the impact of the IDC and Fruit One on citrus smallholder farmers’ livelihood outcomes in the Eastern Cape and Limpopo, South Africa.
He posed this interesting question, ‘How can small farmers access European markets?’
Dr Mpuzu informed us that European markets require specialization. The farmers he studied tended to be around the age of 50 years old. His study also revealed that Farmers now have better access to technical and financial resources.
The socio-economic value of French language education in Lesotho was an interesting paper presented by Professor Sandiso Ngcobo of MUT.
He told the audience that people in Africa need to learn foreign languages because we depend on trade and donations from foreign countries. ‘If you know more languages you have an advantage, you can interact with more people,’ stated Professor Ngcobo.
Professor Logan Naidoo of MUT presented a passionate paper on ‘Reflecting upon ethical imperative for scholarly researchers.’
‘Research institutions need a code of ethics,’ warned Professor Naidoo. ‘What is needed is a culture of integrity,’ said Professor Naidoo.
He later went on to state that Academics are under pressure.
Mrs Bongekile Mvuyane of MUT looked at mega-projects as a vehicle for providing long lasting benefits to housing beneficiaries in the eThekwini Municipality.
She focused on the Cornubia project being built to the North of Durban near Gateway and Phoenix.
‘Cornubia is one of the largest mixed use projects,’ noted Mrs Mvuyane.
‘Why mega projects? To transform the city, they attract jobs, they help the city meet their challenges,’ explained Mrs Mvuyane.
The final session of the day was chaired by Dr Victor Ibeanusi of Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, USA.
Dr Bakura of MUT warned that we need to rethink wasting water.
Mr Joseph Bwapwa of MUT presented a paper about Jet Fuel from algae on behalf of Professor Akash Anandraj of MUT.
‘How do we convert algae into jet fuel?’ asked Mr Bwapwa.
Remember to visit all of the exhibitions at the conference.
People have also been posting their pictures on social media all about the conference.
If you are at the conference share your insights and post your images from the conference on social media using the hashtag #MUTRIEWeek
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