Prof Romain Murenzi, the Executive Director of the World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) received an honorary doctoral degree from the University of Johannesburg (UJ) at a prestigious graduation ceremony. The Honoris Causa degree in Engineering was conferred on 24 April 2019 at the UJ Sanlam Auditorium, Kingsway Campus, Johannesburg, South Africa. The Academy of Science of South Africa and the TWAS Sub-Saharan Africa Regional Partner (TWAS) wishes to congratulate him on this achievement.
Prof Murenzi is a renowned Rwandan Physicist, and former Minister of Education, Science, Technology and Scientific Research in Rwanda. He actively serves on the Advisory Board of Scientists without Borders, and also on the Scientific Board of UNESCO International Basic Science Programme. The degree was conferred in recognition of his many contributions to academia, humanity and his role amongst many others on the scientific board of the UNESCO International Basic Science Programme. Prof Murenzi is a Fellow of TWAS and the African Academy of Sciences (AAS).
He was born in Rwanda and has had an impressive academic career and has made impactful contributions to society and sciences at large in the developing world, especially sub-Saharan Africa. He has played significant roles in the advancement of sciences in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and also the Science and Technology Lagging Countries (STLCs) altogether with his colleagues at TWAS since 2011.
TWAS and ASSAf have an active Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for executing science related activities in sub-Saharan Africa targeted at increasing the uptake of opportunities for young scientists. ASSAf hosts the TWAS-SAREP secretariat effectively from 2015 when the SAREP secretariat was transferred to South Africa from Kenya. Through Prof Murenzi’s influence and leadership, TWAS-SAREP and ASSAf hosted the Inaugural Regional Science Diplomacy Training Workshop in partnership with TWAS and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Moreover, ASSAf and TWAS-SAREP are also responsible for creating awareness and for assessing the vitality of TWAS related programmes in the region and for establishing sustainable relationships with science academies and organisations in the system of innovation.
Mr Stanley Maphosa, the International and National Liaison Manager at ASSAf, and TWAS-SAREP Coordinator said that “It is time that African leaders support more of science including but not limited to research and development, science academies and the training of PhD students. This is critical to development for any country”.