Norman Borlaug: A Tribute
Despite the fact that Norman Borlaug, winner of the 1970 Nobel Peace Prize and central figure in the ‘green revolution’ that made more food available for the world’s hungry has passed on, his legacy thrives.
|The Late Dr. Norman Borlaug|
Africa has a lot to learn from the late Norman Borlaug. One of the landmark remarks he made was that “You can't eat potential.” That Africa has immense human and natural resource potential can not be disputed. But why is this potential unable to extricate the continent from starvation that faces over 120 million of its inhabitants?
Africa ought to seriously interrogate its warped potential that has seen it embrace an education system that prepares Africans to solve problems outside Africa but be impotent within the continent. The continent ought to rethink holding onto food aid that only serves to enrich agriculture in donor nations and crowd out indigenous food crops in favour of exotic ones that demand far more input.
Africa’s research is mostly underfunded and largely remains stacked on bookshelfs. From Norman Borlaug, Africa ought to learn that research findings ought to exit the bookshelves and be implemented. It is time that the continent strengthened research excellence that will combine the latest scientific knowledge with the local knowledge to unlock its potential and maximise its impact. Africa need not imbibe the notion that it is in a state of permanent emergency. Africans must change their attitude and develop a new confidence with a view of unchaining the continent from its artificial poverty, squalor and perverted potential.
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