First National Bank (FNB) has bankrolled the Young Earth Scientists Network Namibia (YES) to the tune of $N 65 000 which was complemented by a $N10 000 Ministry of Mines donation to attend the high profile 35th International Geological Congress (IGC) to be held in South Africa this month end.
The high level conference slated for the 29th of August up to the 3rd of September will see scientists from all over the world converging for the fifth time in Africa to share science related information and Namibia will be represented by three students, four teachers and staff members from the Geological Survey.
Speaking at the hand-over ceremony of sponsorship for the congress, FNB’s Sepo Lamaswala Haihambo expressed her delight in sponsoring the Namibian science delegation as coming in time to empowering young people to engage constructively with the world on matters of national development.
“The benefits of cross border exchange of ideas have been well documented throughout history, therefore platforms and debate forums such as these are important in equipping our youth in order for them to continue to grow our national ability to engage constructively on international platforms,” she said.
Mines and Energy Minister who is also Young Earth Scientists’ patron Obeth Kandjoze applauded the intervention as allowing young scientists ample opportunity to learn, network and market themselves among the science giants from all over the world.
“I would like to express our sincerest appreciation for the wonderful opportunity FNB’s generous support of YES has afforded these young scientists and teachers. The International Geological Congress (IGC), which occurs every four years is like the world cup of geosciences. This will be a great opportunity for the young scientists to learn, network and market themselves,” he said.
Kandjoze however submitted that there has been a lack of funding for Namibian scientist to grab such opportunities to brush shoulders with international scientists at such prestigious events, he blamed this on the failure of financial institutions and non-scientists in understanding the field and its demands.
This will be the second time South Africa will be hosting the world ever since 1929 and an approximate 3 800 presentations will be made including those by the Namibian delegation while the next event will be hosted by India.
“I am very grateful and excited, I would like to thank our sponsors for making this possible, I will take this opportunity first hand and represent my country in the best way that I can,” said YES affiliate and UNAM student Josephine Uushona.