All great movements have humble beginnings.
On Saturday April 14, the first genuine March for Science was held in Accra, Ghana, organised by ‘Alliance for Science’.
With banners, Placards and music, a group about fifty participants walked from the CSIR premises near 37 roundabout to Flagstaff House and back. In this way they joined the approximately 250 sister marches held on this day all around the world.
A short press conference followed the march at the CSIR premises in which three keynote speakers emphasised the importance of the movement and the principles behind it.
Dr. Margaret Atikpo, Patron of ‘Alliance for Science’, stressed the need for all Ghanaians to take responsibility when it comes to combatting pollution which affects our health in many ways.
Prof. Kenneth Danso, director of BNARI, spoke about the poverty of farmers and the solutions that bio-technology can offer for greater pest-resistance of crops and larger yields.
Mr Emmanuel Agyarko, Chair of the Parliament’s Select Committee on Environment, Science and Technology, recounting from his background as a pharmacist, stressed the importance of the development of medicines that can improve the lives of people with illnesses such as HIV-Aids and diabetis.
He also referred to the insufficient levels of funding and education that prevents Ghana to build its own solid science base.
Speakers at the event acknowledged science and technology as the only real way forward in the development of the country. They also emphasised that this needs to go together with changes in attitudes among the general public towards traditional beliefs and behaviours.
The first global March for Science was held last year as a response to comments by the US president Donald Trump, who labelled climate change research a ‘hoax’.
Since then scientists world-wide have spoken out for more science-based policies by their respective governments on issues as varied as policies on gun-control, responsible use of GMO techniques in agriculture, environment-friendly solutions for plastic waste and promoting science education in schools.
As these issues affect everyone, science-based policies are typically non-partisan; that is not dominated by the political agendas of either the parties in government or the opposition.
Source: GNN Correspondent.