Kenya minister for higher education, science and technology, Margaret Kamar has called for the review, consolidate and refining of the policy and strategies on space policies if the country is to tap into space technology for development.
She said Kenya way behind in attaining new status of National Industrialized Country by (NIC) 2030 if the policy was not well defined.
Speaking at the 4th African Leadership Conference on Space Science and Technology for sustainable development in Mombasa, Kamar noted that policies are not well defined since there is no space boundary to allow more researchers on space activities.
“Space has no boundaries or boarders similar to those that are defined in our country,” she said.
She said the African Leadership Conference (ALCs) will help in reviewing the guidelines in formulating joint approaches to space utilization, adding that low human capital, weak governance, change in global economy and climate change has majorly affected Kenya in achieving Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
The UN’s Millennium Development Goals commit African nations to a global partnership meant to reduce poverty, improve healthcare services and promote peace, education human rights, gender equality and environment sustainability.
She added that the objectives of scientific and technological programmes of the New Partnership for the African’s Development (NEPAD) need to focus on enhancing food production, health and energy.
The conference brings about participants drawn all over the world to discuss global and share challenges that African countries face in realizing the opportunities that are brought by space science, and use the objective of the conference to provide solutions to the problem facing African continent.
She also called upon the African nations to increase the spending of the space activities, since space technologies are complex and have high financial risk, urging that the funds would be used in improving the human welfare on earth, meanwhile the space science offers unique opportunity to balance consumption and production to ensure the sustainability of the resources and environment.
She also noted that some of the funds may be used in conducting research and establishing research institutions to generate more scholars in these institutions.
Only Algeria, Nigeria, South Africa, Egypt, and Morroco have developed their own space programmes while other African nations have developed their capacity building of earth observatory centres in collaboration with other regional and international space bodies.