SASSCAL Executive Director visits Botswana Node

The Executive Director of the Southern African Science Service Centre for Climate Change and Adaptive Land Management (SASSCAL), Dr. Jane Olwoch recently visited the SASSCAL Botswana Node. During the visit from 10 – 13 January 2022, Dr. Olwoch met Botswana’s Ministry of Environment, Natural Resources and Tourism Permanent Secretary and SASSCAL Board Member, Dr. Oduetse Oldman Koboto, SASSCAL Alternate Board member and Botswana Node employees.

The four-day visit was aimed at charting the way forward for SASSCAL Node in Botswana and update SASSCAL Line Ministry on SASSCAL progress and outlook. Dr. Olwoch highlighted SASSCAL achievements during the year 2021, which include establishment of the SASSCAL Graduate Studies in Integrated Water Resources Management (SGSP-IWRM) and signing of a grant agreement with Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). The BMBF grant amounting to 8.678.198,14.00 euros will be directed to the financing of SASSCAL 2.0 Programme which constitutes a collection of 13 Research projects to be implemented in the SADC  Region where Botswana will be benefiting to the value of  34,000,000 Pula.

Commencement of the construction of SASSCAL office in Botswana was also discussed.

Dr Olwoch also updated the Permanent Secretary on the future outlook of SASSCAL and highlighted that the following projects would commence in 2022:  SASSCAL 2.0 Research Programme, various Green Hydrogen projects in SADC, and GMES-WeMAST Phase 2 in addition to continuation of the development of services and products.  Dr. Koboto, thanked Dr Olwoch for visiting Botswana and updating him on achievements of SASSCAL in 2021 and future projects, reiterating Botswana’s commitment and support to SASSCAL.  The Permanent Secretary said he looked forward to the commencement of the construction of SASSCAL Offices in Botswana.  His Ministry would support this project in addition to offering land on which the offices will be built.   The Federal Ministry for Education and Research of the Federal Republic of Germany (BMBF), which is SASSCAL’s main sponsor will fund the construction costs.

In attendance were SASSCAL Alternate Board Member, Mr. Balisi Gopolang, the Ministry of Environment’s acting Deputy Permanent Secretary for Environmental Affairs, Mrs. Kelebaone Maselesele, Deputy Permanent Secretary for Corporate Services, Mr. Jacob Momini, and Botswana Node’s Finance and Administration Officer, Ms. Tshepang Twala.

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