UR and Stakeholders move to Discuss Environmental Effects on Human Health
From 28th-29th December 2016, the Department of Chemistry organized a workshop where it invited its stakeholders such as (Rwanda Environmental Management Agency) REMA, (Water Sanitation and Corporation) WASAC, (Rwanda Standard Bureau) RSB and the School of Mining and Geology of the University of Rwanda. The aim of the workshop was to disseminate research findings which are mainly related to environmental issues and human health, strengthening research capacity and increasing collaboration with stakeholders.
Presentations and discussions done showed that rivers, lakes, marshlands, soil, air and some kinds of foods are polluted or contaminated by chemicals from both natural and anthropogenic activities. Discharge from towns, industries, hospitals, mining activities, agricultural activities are among the sources of pollutants found in our rivers and lakes.
Water from Nyabugogo River indicated a high amount of heavy metals and it is also suspected to contain some of organic pollutants from garages, industries and agricultural activities. Beside this, it was also shown that some analysed foodstuff flours, taken randomly from different markets of the country, contain mycotoxins. Furthermore, research results showed also that bad use of cooking oils leads to the formation of some harmful chemicals which risk to cause different diseases to human. Presentations indicated also that through chemical methods some of these pollution problems can be resolved. Unfortunately, laboratory equipment and qualified human resources are still limited and these studies need to be conducted outside of the country.
Participants during discussions
During the group sessions, they discussed on how they are going to form a research group and see how they can increase the number of MoUs with its stakeholders especially in research and consultancy in order to reinforce the research so that the output will respond to their needs in particular and in general the needs of the country. They also highlighted some challenges like: lack of sufficient and trained laboratory technicians, lack of sufficient laboratory equipment and lack of sufficient and qualified academic staff members. At the end of the workshop they elaborated many resolutions to be submitted to UR management so that UR can intervene in the implementation of different projects that the department of chemistry will be working on with its stakeholders.
UR Academic Staff from chemistry department
- Courtesy of UR Corporate Communication Office - UR HQ