UN Assistant Secretary General and UNDP Assistant Administrator and Regional Director for Africa Ms. Ahuma Eziakonwa, Minister of Science and Technology Hon, Felix Mutati, Minster of Youth and Arts Hon, Elvis Nkandu and CBU Acting Vice Chancellor engage with innovators.

In a significant stride towards fostering innovation and research, Copperbelt University (CBU) proudly unveils its latest initiative: the Mukuba Innovation Pod (UniPod), established in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

This groundbreaking venture aims to cultivate a vibrant ecosystem for research, entrepreneurship, and technological advancement within the University.

The Mukuba UniPod, housed at the Copperbelt University main campus in Kitwe, represents a dedicated space where innovators, academia, industry, and policymakers converge to drive innovation and address pressing societal challenges. This initiative underscores CBU’s commitment to spearheading innovation and contributing to sustainable development both locally and globally.

The launch on 25th February 2024, marked a pivotal moment for CBU and UNDP as they unveiled the Mukuba UniPod’s state-of-the-art facilities and outlined its ambitious objectives. Representatives from the UNDP, government officials, industry leaders, and academic experts graced the occasion, emphasising the collaborative nature of the initiative.

Speaking at the launch, UN Assistant Secretary General and UNDP Assistant Administrator and Regional Director for Africa Ms. Ahuma Eziakonwa said that the launch of the Mukuba UniPod underscores Zambia’s pivotal role alongside 12 other African nations, demonstrating the transformative power and strategic influence of innovations in improving the lives of people.

Ms Eziakonwa expressed joy at both the nation of Zambia and CBU in particular for achieving this land mark status in the use of technology and innovation to attain sustainable development and recognised Mukuba UNiPod as a model for other innovation hubs in the continent.

And Minister of Science and Technology Hon, Felix Mutati stated during the launch that he was confident that the UNiPod will serve as a catalyst for Innovation, collaboration and excellence in professional occupational development paving way for a more prosperous and sustainable Zambia.

Also in attendance, Hon, Elvis Nkandu Minister of Youth, Sports and Arts called on all parties to harness the power of creativity, collaboration and entrepreneurship to propel Zambia towards prosperity and excellence on the global stage.

And CBU Council Chairperson Ms Felicity Chisanga expressed enthusiasm for the UniPod’s potential to promote transformative change through research collaborations and technology.

The launch reaffirms that with 60% of the continent’s population under the age of 25, positioning UNiPods in public Universities ensures engagement with the youth, channelling their talent towards innovative solutions.

The UniPod’s focus areas will encompass a wide range of fields including renewable energy, agriculture, healthcare, information technology, and environmental sustainability. Through collaborative research projects and innovation challenges, the UniPod aims to develop scalable solutions that address local and global development priorities.

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